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HYDE PARK, Massachusetts – he second leg of a historic season for Mass Golf will commence on Monday, July 30 for the 115th playing of the Massachusetts Women’s Amateur Championship at Hyde Park’s George Wright Golf Course – one of two municipal golf courses owned and operated by the City of Boston.
This year’s Women’s Amateur Championship, the longest tenured amateur competition hosted by Mass Golf and one of the oldest tournaments in the country, comes just two weeks after Westwood’s Patrick Frodigh was crowned champion on the same course at the Massachusetts Amateur Championship.
“We are excited to continue what has been a historic month for amateur golf in the Bay State,” said Jesse Menachem, Mass Golf’s Executive Director/CEO. “All golf enthusiasts are encouraged to come out this week to watch some of our state’s top female athletes compete on one of the most incredible courses that the Bay State has to offer.”
Featuring 65 of the state’s top female golfers, this year’s Women’s Amateur Championship will be highlighted by the return of reigning champion and Women’s Player of the Year, Hannah Ghelfi, the University of Michigan rising junior from Pocasset GC, as well as Thorny Lea GC’s Shannon Johnson, who has already this year captured the Edith Noblit Baker Trophy and the New England Women’s Golf Association (NEWGA) Championship.
Although the first starting time is set for 8:00 a.m., the festivities will kick off 15 minutes earlier when seven-time Massachusetts Women’s Amateur Champion Anne Marie Tobin will strike a ceremonial tee shot off the George Wright GC 1st tee.
Tobin, a 2016 inductee into the Massachusetts Golf Hall of Fame, represents the first individual in the 115-year history of the event to to strike a ceremonial first drive at the Massachusetts Women’s Amateur Championship.
“I cannot think of a better representative to hit the first drive,” said Dennis Roache, the Director of Administration of Boston Parks & Recreation Department at the City of Boston. “We are excited to welcome Anne Marie and an entire field of exceptional women golfers to our course for a historic week of golf.”
As a way to celebrate and kick off day one of the Massachusetts Women’s Amateur Championship, Mass Golf announced that Anne Marie Tobin, a 2016 inductee into the Massachusetts Golf Hall of Fame, will be on hand to become the first individual to strike a ceremonial first drive at the Massachusetts Women’s Amateur Championship.
Tobin won the Women’s Amateur Championship a record seven times (1988, ’91, ’92, ’93, ’94, ’95 and 2000), including a string of five-straight victories from 1991 to 1995. Her final victory came in 2000 and — to date — no other golfer has ever won as many Women’s Amateur titles.
The Reading native was the first girl to play on the Reading High School boys’ golf team and went on to capture the 1978 New England Intercollegiate Championship. She won her first Mass Golf event in 1982, when she captured the Grace Keyes Cup, the state’s annual stroke-play championship. She would go on to win that title a total of seven times over a span of 18 years.
“I have always been a proponent of the MGA and WGAM working together to enhance our abilities to promote golf, so I could not have been more pleased when the groups merged and formed Mass Golf,” said Tobin. “My hat is off to the many people who worked to make this happen. They are to be congratulated for seeing the big picture and taking the steps to ensure that Massachusetts will continue to be a leader in the promotion of the game of golf.”
Tobin has also been a force on the regional and national stage. Tobin was a quarterfinalist in the1990 U.S. Women’s Mid-Amateur as well as the 1991 U.S. Women’s Amateur Championship, a three-time Massachusetts Women’s Open champion and a four-time selection to Team Massachusetts in the USGA Women’s State Team Championship.
Among numerous honors, the three-time Women’s Player of the Year — in 1994, 1995 and 2000 — was recognized when the state association named its top annual competitive designation the Massachusetts Anne Marie Tobin Player of the Year Award
She stands as the first woman elected outright to what was formerly called the MGA Executive Committee and also was the first woman to complete a full two-year term as president of the Francis Ouimet Scholarship Fund. In 2008, she was bestowed the Ouimet Fund’s Richard F. Connolly, Jr. Distinguished Service Award.
“Anne Marie Tobin has been a trailblazer both on and off the course,” said Jesse Menachem, Mass Golf’s Executive Director/CEO. “She has been a driving force in elevating and growing the opportunities that are available for women golfers and to this day she continues to be an incredible ambassador for Mass Golf.”
A graduate of Mount Holyoke College and Suffolk University Law School, Tobin practiced law for 30 years before becoming a sports reporter for the Lynn Item and sports editor of the Lynnfield and weeklies. She also serves as the associate editor of North Shore Golf magazine.
“I’ve played one round of golf – six years ago – in the last 10 years, and still have no idea where my clubs are, but I will find a driver and am honored yet also terrified to have been asked to take part in such a historic event,” said Tobin. “This week will definitely be the icing on the cake of the MGA-WGAM merger. I look forward to a great week of women’s golf watching the best female golfers in the state battle for the most prestigious women’s championship in Massachusetts at George Wright, a true gem if ever there was one.”
Admission for all Mass Golf events – including the Massachusetts Women’s Amateur Championship – is free of charge for the general public. Spectators are welcome to attend and enjoy a special “inside the ropes” experience.
An event that has been contested since 1900 is rich in history and memorable moments. Here are helpful resources about the current and past events.
This year marks the 115th playing of the Massachusetts Women’s Amateur Championship. The first Massachusetts Women’s Amateur, played in 1900 at Oakley Country Club, was conducted for a total of 54 golfers. The championship was held every year except for 1918 and 1918 and 1943-45 due to WWI and WWII, respectively.
The Massachusetts Women’s Amateur Championship is the oldest championship conducted by Mass Golf.
Eligibility: Entries are open to amateur golfers who have an active Mass Golf/GHIN Handicap Index at any public, private, semi-private, municipal or non-real estate Mass Golf member course/club not exceeding 14.0 – Class A (as determined by the July 1, 2018 Handicap Revision), or who have completed their handicap certification.
Prizes: Stroke Play Medalist | Low Net Qualifier – Osgood Memorial Cup | Amateur Champion – Gold medal and Championship Bowl | Amateur Finalist – Curtis Memorial Trophy | President’s Cup Champion – President’s Trophy | President’s Cup Finalist – Finalist Tray.
Championship Field: The starting field of 65 golfers will be cut after 18 holes to the low 32 scorers who will advance to Match Play on July 31 in either Championship Flight or President’s Cup Flight.
Schedule of Play: Eighteen holes of stroke play are scheduled on Monday, July 30 at George Wright Golf Course. The low 32 competitors will advance to the Championship Flight (match play). Any ties for the final Championship Flight qualifying place(s) will be determined by a hole-by- hole playoff.
The next lowest 32 competitors will advance to the President’s Cup Flight (match play). Any ties for the final President’s Cup qualifying place(s) will be determined by a USGA match of cards. Competitors who “opted out” of the President’s Cup Flight will not be counted in the match play seeding.
Match Play: A general numeric draw will be used. For purposes of determining places in the draw, ties in qualifying rounds shall be decided by the order in which scores are returned, except that places of those participating in a play-off shall be determined by performance in the play-off and if necessary a blind draw.
In the event of a tied match, (a) the winner shall be decided immediately by a hole-by-hole play-off, and (b) the stipulated round is deemed to extend to as many holes as are required for a match to be won.
A Look Back at 2017: East Falmouth’s Hannah Ghelfi of Pocasset Golf Club overcame a 3-down deficit to defeat Angela Garvin of The Ranch GC by a 2-up margin at Myopia Hunt Club on August 3 to win the 114th Massachusetts Women’s Amateur Championship. After finishing T-2 in the stroke play portion of the Championship earlier in the week, Ghelfi drew the fourth seed in the match play bracket and defeated the likes of Mary Jane Wagner (3&1), Julia Ford (4&3) and Jennifer Keim (4&3) before advancing to the final two matches on Thursday. In the President’s Cup match play bracket for the tournament’s second flight, Elizabeth Corcoran of Oyster Harbors Club defeated Caroline Schernecker of The Country Club) by a final score of 4&2. Read More
Past Champions in the Field: The following competitors have been victorious at this event in the Championship Flight and are a part of the 2018 Championship Proper field.
Par and Yardage: George Wright Golf Course will be set up at approximately 5,901 yards and will play to a par of 36-36–72.
George Wright Golf Course
Most Victories: 7 (Anne Marie Tobin. – 1988, 1991-1995, 2000)
Most Times as a Host Club: 15 (The Country Club)
Last Competitor to Defend: Isabel Southard (2014-15)
Most Common Name in the 2018 Field: Elizabeth (2); Emily (2); Gail (2); Hannah (2); Lynne (2); Sarah (2)
Total Number of Mass Golf Member Clubs Represented: 49
Most Represented Mass Golf Member Clubs: The Country Club (4); Thorny Lea GC (4); Boston GC (2); Charles River CC (2); Crumpin-Fox Club (2); Nashawtuc CC (2); Orchards GC (2); Pocasset GC (2); Presidents GC (2); Wollaston GC (2); Worcester CC (2)
For complete coverage of the Massachusetts Amateur Championship, visit MassGolf.org or follow Mass Golf on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram at @PlayMassGolf and by using the hashtag, #MassWomensAm.