CHERRY HILLS VILLAGE, Colo. – Michael Weaver never stopped believing it was his day, even after his big lead started to slip away.
Buoyed by four birdies on the front nine, including a 50-foot putt on the par-3 eighth, Weaver shook off Justin Thomas’ late run for a 3-and-2 victory Saturday and a shot in the U.S. Amateur final at Cherry Hills.
“Whenever you make a putt like that, it’s a little bit of luck,” Weaver said. “But you know, it was just kind of one of those days when it’s your day.”
Weaver will face Steven Fox of Hendersonville, Tenn., today in the 36-hole championship match.
Fox, a senior at Tennessee-Chattanooga, beat Brandon Hagy, Weaver’s teammate at the University of California, 2-up.
The 21-year-old Weaver, from Fresno, Calif., opened his semifinal match with Thomas with three birdies to go 2-up. He stretched his lead to 5-up after the 10th hole and withstood a rally by Thomas, an Alabama freshman who won three of four holes to get within two.
Weaver secured the win when he knocked in a 6-foot birdie putt on the 451-yard, par-4 16th.
Fox, who advanced to the semifinals by defeating Chris Williams, the University of Washington star who was the top-ranked amateur, weathered a tightly contested match with Hagy that was all square as late as the 14th hole.
On the 472-yard, par-4 18th, Fox used a 4-iron for his 206-yard second, landing it within 6 feet of the hole.
“Best shot of my life,” Fox said.