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Aug. 19, 2015

OLYMPIA FIELDS, Ill. – South Carolina senior Matt NeSmith defeated Clemson’s Billy Kennerly 1 up in his opening round match at the U.S. Amateur Championship on Wednesday at Olympia Fields Country Club’s North Course.

With the win, NeSmith will face SMU’s Bryson DeChambeau in the round of 32 on Thursday at 9:50 a.m. ET. DeChambeau, a rising senior at SMU, won the NCAA individual title at Concession Golf Club in June.

“I’m really excited to get through today,” NeSmith said. “Billy played really well and put up a great fight until the end. Bryson is a friend, and I’m excited to go head-to-head with one of the best amateurs in the world and test my game.”

After leading 2 up for most of the match, NeSmith pushed his lead to 3 up with a birdie on the par-4 14th while Kennerly made par. Kennerly made things interesting down the stretch by winning two of the next three holes, leaving NeSmith with a 1 up lead heading to the 18th tee. However, both golfers made par on No. 18 to send NeSmith into the round of 32 with a 1 up victory.

The winner of the match between NeSmith and DeChambeau will advance to the third round, which will also be contested on Thursday. Fox Sports 1 will air coverage of the second and third rounds from 2-5 p.m. Live results will also be available at

Gamecock senior Sean Kelly fell just short of making it to match play earlier on Wednesday. At the conclusion of the second round of stroke play, Kelly was in a group of 18 golfers in a tie for 55th at 3-over par. The 18 golfers played in a playoff for 10 spots in match play. Kelly made it to the fourth playoff hole, where three golfers were in the mix for the last two spots. He made par on the par-5 18th, but Jonny De Los Reyes and Kyle Mueller birdied to secure the final two spots.