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LI Amateur champion Semels not eager to go pro

Balance is the key for Hunter Semels. He has balance in the grooved swing that helped him shoot 66 July 12, the first time he ever saw Inwood Country Club, and make 11 birdies in 27 holes Saturday to win the Long Island Amateur Championship, 10 and 9, over Brody Nieporte.

Semels, 26, also has balance between being a sales representative for a family company and a national-class golfer - his 2010 sights are on the U.S. Amateur, in which he competed three years ago at San Francisco's Olympic Club, and the U.S. Mid-Amateur at Atlantic Golf Club.

Semels made a huge impact locally with his dominance in the Long Island Amateur. The six-time North Hempstead Country Club champion, who played for Manhasset High and Rollins College, said the strength of his game is accuracy, which is what Inwood rewards most.

Unlike many top amateurs, though, Semels is not a pro in training. He likes working for a living and playing golf for an avocation.

"I'll never rule it out," he said of playing for pay. "But right now, I'm just enjoying playing amateur golf. Amateur golf in this area is so good."


Former major leaguers Ron Blomberg and Fred Cambria are scheduled to participate in the Living Water Full Gospel Church golf outing Aug. 2 at Long Island National in Riverhead. Call 631-722-4969 . . . Nassau County Bar Association will hold its annual Stephen W. Schlissel We Care Golf Classic Aug. 2 at Middle Bay Country Club, Oceanside. Call 516-877-8000.


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