Creamer reaches women's amateur semis



She'll meet Amanda McCurdy in today's semifinal round.
ERIE, Pa. (AP) -- Paula Creamer mastered her short game to beat Diana Ramage 3 and 2 on a rain-soaked golf course Friday, advancing to the semifinals of the U.S. Women's Amateur for the second straight year.
The 18-year-old Creamer, of Pleasanton, Calif., dominated most of the round with Ramage, of Fayetteville, Ga., who was playing in the tournament for the second time.
Creamer eagled the par-5 No. 8 to go 2-up, but she bogeyed the next hole.
Took control on 12th
Wearing her favorite color, pink, on a bracelet and under the brim of her hat, Creamer seemed to take control at the par-5 12th. After missing the green, she chipped the ball about 2 feet from the hole and went 3-up.
Her ability to knock it close helped her maintain the lead after some difficult long shots.
On the 464-yard par-5 14th, Creamer's second shot was short and right of the green, coming to rest between the roots of a pine tree. She knocked the ball in the rough off the green, and chipped within just a few feet of the hole to save par.
Ramage conceded, missed her putt, and they halved the hole.
"I hit a terrible 3-wood into that green. I kind of deserved the lie that I was in," said Creamer, whose boyfriend, Tarick Can, carried her bag.
Creamer also missed the green on the 15th, but pitched it close to the hole and made par to halve the hole. Ramage and Creamer both parred the 338-yard 16th, sealing the win for Creamer.
"I'm just feeling really comfortable and really confident out there," Creamer said.
McCurdy advances
Today, Creamer will play Amanda McCurdy, of El Dorado, Ark. The 20-year-old McCurdy won 3 and 2 against 17-year-old Sun-Young Yoo of Korea.
McCurdy had a string of birdies on the front nine and was 6-up through 11. But she saw her lead start to slip away after Yoo won the 12th, 13th and 14th holes.
McCurdy, who uses a discolored 1969 quarter as a ballmarker, said she thought she had enough of a cushion but thought maybe her adrenaline was taking over.
"So I just tried to settle myself and tried to get it on the green like I had been doing and just putt like I had been putting," McCurdy said.
She had pars on 15 and 16 to win the match.
Other semifinalists
Last year's runner-up, Jane Park, of Rancho Cucamonga, Calif., beat Beth Allen, of San Diego, 4 and 2 to advance.
Park plays Sarah Huarte, of Shingle Springs, Calif., on Saturday. Huarte beat Morgan Pressel, of Boca Raton, Fla., 1-up.
Three of the four semifinalists -- Huarte, Park and Creamer -- were on the U.S. Curtis Cup team. The U.S. team retained the cup by beating Britain and Ireland.
"I think that shows how good the team was," Huarte said.
Added Park, "Our [Curtis Cup] team was very young but very deep in talent and skill and that's really showing in this tournament."
Copyright 2004 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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