Men’s Bracket

Women’s Bracket

By Alex Podlogar

For Michael Riebe, it was a beautiful night in Pinehurst.

Illuminated lastly by the electronic scoreboard displaying the North & South Amateur leaderboard – and illuminated best in those fortunate seconds when the Peter Millar apparel ad played in rotation – Riebe was faced Wednesday night with a downhill 4-footer for a chance to see, literally, the light of day in this championship.

The nearby chimes of the Village Chapel signaled that 9 p.m. had descended on Pinehurst No. 2’s 18th green.

“At that point, you can’t see the line, or read slopes or anything like that,” Riebe said. “I told my caddie, ‘I’m just going to aim for the center of the cup, hit it hard and hope it doesn’t lose the hole.’”

Playing in the dark isn’t actually anything new for the Vanderbilt recruit and a member of the USGA’s newly minted U.S. National Junior Team.

“With my friends, yeah, we’re always pushing darkness,” he said. “But for something like this on the line? Oh, never.”

Fourteen hours later, Riebe was still in Pinehurst, having made that putt on 18 to nab the 32nd and final seed of the championship. And under the gray sky and coated by the swampy air that served for weather on Thursday morning for the round of 32 matches in the 124th North & South Men’s Amateur, Riebe again found himself facing another treacherous downhiller from about 4 feet, this time on the 16th green.

Tentatively holding a 1-up lead over the medalist and top-seeded Kelly Chinn, Riebe slid that putt in as well, prompting his caddie to mutter to onlookers, “Glad it wasn’t me trying that putt.”

At 17, Riebe poured in a bomb from the back fringe of the green for birdie, some 40 feet away, completing a 3&1 triumph over Chinn, whose family resides in nearby CCNC.

“This is just awesome,” said a wide-eyed, though admittedly exhausted Riebe, who is playing his first North & South Amateur.

Jackson Van Paris hits a tee shot during Thursday's round of 32 at the 124th North & South Men's Amateur.
Jackson Van Paris hits a tee shot during Thursday's round of 32 at the 124th North & South Men's Amateur.

Before Riebe’s fireworks, Chinn was one of three hometown hopefuls entering the day. After Carson Bertagnole, who won the North Carolina State 4-A Championship last month for nearby Pinecrest High School, fell 1-down to Andy Xu, there remains only one.

Two things are unsurprising about that. The first is that it is Jackson Van Paris, a former Runner-up and semifinalist in this event. The second is that Van Paris blitzed another opponent in the early going to establish a lead that would only be moderately threatened the rest of the day.

A day before, Van Paris lit up Pinehurst by playing the opening five holes in 5 under, needing just 16 shots to play them. On Thursday, he needed – ho-hum – all of 17 shots in building a 5-up lead on Colorado’s Hunter Swanson through the first five holes, chipping in on the 1st and 2nd holes for birdie.

“Obviously, chipping in on the first two holes definitely helps,” quipped Van Paris, chuckling. “That kind of start really helped and kept my nerves at ease.”

Not that Van Paris didn’t have to work for it. Swanson, who could be seen shaking his head and smiling to himself after going 5-down, rallied with birdies on 6 and 7 to creep closer. Birdies on 11 and 12 got him within 2-down, but the deficit – and Van Paris’s inspired play down the stretch – enabled the No. 2 seed and 8th-ranked amateur in the world to advance.

Par saves at 13 and 14, a birdie on top of Swanson’s on 15 and then a par save from 25 feet on 16 closed out the match, leaving Swanson again shaking his head as he walked up the 18th fairway to the clubhouse, even after making five birdies in a 10-hole stretch.

“That just shows the caliber of players out here,” Van Paris said.

UNC's Kayla Smith hits a shot during Thursday's round fo 32 matches in the 122nd North & South Women's Amateur.
UNC's Kayla Smith hits a shot during Thursday's round fo 32 matches in the 122nd North & South Women's Amateur.

It’s the same caliber on the women’s side this week. The 122nd North & South Women’s Amateur is being played concurrently this week, with all of the two championships’ round of 32 matches being played on Pinehurst No. 2 on Thursday.

For the first time, though, North Carolina’s Kayla Smith will advance. Playing her fifth North & South, UNC’s All-ACC player comfortably marched into the round of 16 with a 5&4 win over Yale’s Mia Sessa. Smith, a native of nearby Burlington, NC, used birdies on the 1st and 4th holes before a string of five straight pars helped her close out the front nine with a 5-up lead.

“It really was pretty comfortable out there,” Smith said. “I was able to build a nice lead by the turn and didn’t feel like I needed to keep my foot on the gas the rest of the way. You can never turn it off around here, but it’s nice to finally make it past the round of 32.”

Smith is without her usual practice round partner – her good friend and defending North & South Women’s Amateur Champion Anna Morgan, who played the British Women’s Amateur in Ireland this week.

Not that Smith minds all that much. She wants to win, after all.

“She’s had insane success here, so it was so great to see her win here last year,” Smith said of Morgan. “I’m pulling as much energy from her as I can, but I’m glad she’s not playing here this year!”

Wake Forest's Macy Putt reacts during Thursday's round.
Wake Forest's Macy Putt reacts during Thursday's round.

Macy Pate, the 2023 North & South Junior Girls Champion, though, is playing this week. And playing so well that she entered the round of 32 as the championship’s medalist and top seed. The ACC Freshman of the Year advanced on Thursday, rallying past Lauren Gomez in 19 holes.

“I’m feeling a good bit of relief,” the Wake Forest sophomore said following the win, which featured an up-and-down from the bunker of 17 to square the match and a tidy up-and-down on the first hole – her 19th – from the right side to prevail. “I really didn’t have my best stuff at all today, but I was able to stay close and managed some really good shots at the end.”

Both championships continue with round of 16 and quarterfinal matches on Friday. The semifinal and championship matches are scheduled for Saturday, with the championship matches of the men’s and women’s North & South Amateurs to be played in back-to-back tee times beginning at 12:45 p.m.


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Pinehurst No. 2

Round of 32


No. 32 Michael Riebe d. No. 1 Kelly Chinn 3&1

No. 17 Nicholas Gross d. No. 16 Parker Bell, 3&2

No. 8 Andy Xu d. No. 25 Carson Bertagnole, 1up

No. 9 Jack Turner d. No. 24 Quinton Croker, 3&2

No. 29 Davis Ovard d. No. 4 Brycen Jones, 2up

No. 13 Pongsapak Laopakdee d. No. 20 Josh Duagnmanee, 2&1

No. 5 Luke Colton d. No. 28 Choen Trolio, 2&1

No. 12 Jase Summy d. No. 21 Ethan Evans, 1up

No. 2 Jackson Van Paris d. No. 31 Hunter Swanson, 3&2

No. 15 William Sides d. No. 18 Joshua Stewart, 2up

No. 7 Lotter Reed d. No. 26 Xihaun Chang, 1up

No. 23 Ian Gilligan d. No. 10 Thomas Curry, 3&2

No. 3 Garrett Risner d. No. 30 Anthony Delisanti, 1up

No. 10 James Imai d. No. 14 Ryan Voois, 3&1

No. 6 Ben Warian d. No. 27 Marshall Meisel, 4&3

No. 11 Joshua Bai d. No. 22 Ethan Wilson, 6&4


Round of 16

No. 32 Michael Riebe vs. No. 17 Nicholas Gross, 8:05 a.m.

No. 8 Andy Xu vs. No. 9 Jack Turner, 8:15 a.m.

No. 29 Davis Ovard vs. No. 13 Pongsapak Laopakdee, 8:25 a.m.

No. 5 Luke Colton vs. No. 12 Jase Summy, 8:35 a.m.

No. 2 Jackson Van Paris vs. No. 15 William Sides, 8:45 a.m.

No. 7 Reed Lotter vs. No. 23 Ian Gilligan, 8:55 a.m.

No. 3 Garret Risner vs. No. 19 James Imai, 9:05 a.m.

No. 6 Ben Warian vs. No. 11 Joshua Bai, 9:15 a.m.





Semifinals (AM)

Championship match (PM)



Pinehurst No. 2


Round of 32

No. 1 Macy Pate d. No. 32 Lauren Gomez, 19 holes

No. 16 Avery Weed d. No. 17 Kaitlyn Schroeder, 2&1

No. 8 Mackenzie Lee d. No. 25 Amelie Zalsman, 3&2

No. 24 Jeneath Wong d. No. 9 Adrian Anderson, 19 holes

No. 29 Kayla Smith d. No. 4 Mia Sessa, 5&4

No. 13 Brooke Biermann d. No. 20 Chloe Johnson, 4&3

No. 5 Kylee Choi d. No. 28 Regina Plascencia, 5&4

No. 12 Yingzhi Zhu d. No. 21 Sophie Linder, 2&1

No. 2 Elizabeth Rudisill d. No. No. 31 Anika Varma, 1up

No. 15 Lynn Lim d. No. 18 Avery McCrery, 3&2

No. 7 Molly Smith d. No. 26 Alexa Saldena, 2&1

No. 10 Andie Smith d. No. 23 Kynadie Adams, 5&4

No. 3 Catie Craig d. No. 30 Hannah Reeves, 1up

No. 19 Alice Hodge d. No. 14 Scarlett Schremmer, 1up

No. 6 Emma Schimpf d. No. 27 Cecilia Jia, 4&2

No. 22 Megan Streicher d. No. 11 Katie Lu, 5&4


Round of 16

No. 1 Macy Pate vs. No. 16 Avery Weed, 6:45 a.m.

No. 8 Mackenzie Lee vs. No. 24 Jeneath Wong, 6:55 a.m.

No. 29 Kayla Smith vs. No. 13 Brooke Biermann, 7:05 a.m.

No. 5 Kylee Choi vs. No. 12 Yingzhi Zhu, 7:15 a.m.

No. 2 Elizabeth Rudisill vs. No. 15 Lynn Lim, 7:25 a.m.

No. 7 Molly Smith vs. No. 10 Andie Smith, 7:35 a.m.

No. 3 Catie Craig vs. No. 19 Alice Hodge, 7:45 a.m.

No. 6 Emma Schimpf vs. No. 22 Megan Streicher, 7:55 a.m.





Semifinals (AM)

Championship match (PM)