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WESTON, Massachusetts – The oldest running Mass Golf event is back for another installment on Monday August 12th, as 89 competitors vie for the chance to win the 116th playing of the Massachusetts Women’s Amateur Championship at Weston Golf Club. Along with being the longest tenured amateur competition hosted by Mass Golf, the Women’s Amateur is also one of the oldest tournaments in the country.
This is the seventh time that Weston Golf Club is playing host to the Championship Proper, with the first being back in 1925 which was won by Edith Noblit Baker. Weston is in good company with several other courses who have had the honor of hosting multiple Women’s Amateurs including Brae Burn Country Club, The Country Club, Charles River, and Winchester Country Club. Brae Burn Country Club has hosted 15 Women’s Amateur Championships, the most overall. The last time the Championship was held at Weston was in 2011, when Katie Nelson hoisted the trophy as champion.
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.
The stroke play qualifier has been expanded from 18 holes to 36 holes, with the low 16 participants advancing from there to the Championship match play bracket. Players who finish from 17-32 will advance to the President’s Cup match play bracket. This is changed from the previous format of a one-day stroke play qualifier, followed by the low 32 participants advancing to a match play bracket.
Two Mass Golf Women’s Championship winners are in the field this year, as Hannah Ghelfi (Edith Noblit Baker) and Angela Garvin (Girls Junior Amateur Championship) are both looking to build off their success this year in making a run at the Women’s Amateur Championship. Ghelfi, a rising senior at the University of Michigan is a fixture in Mass Golf Women’s competition. In 2018 she fell in the round of 16 to veteran golfer Pam Kuong, 4 & 3. Garvin, just weeks away from heading into her freshman year at the University of Maryland is looking to take advantage of Shannon Johnson’s absence this year. Garvin advanced to the quarterfinal in the 2018 Championship but was knocked off by the eventual victor Johnson, 2 & 1.
Megan Buck of Thorny Lea Golf Club comes into the 2019 Championship Proper having never won a Massachusetts Women’s Amateur but hopes to change that at Weston this year. Buck has had a string of success so far this season, winning the Cris Eaton Foursomes with fellow Thorny Lea member Shannon Johnson earlier this summer, along with winning the Hannah D. Townshend Cup in late July with Sue Curtin of Boston Golf Club. Most recently, Buck was able to qualify again for the U.S. Women’s Mid-Amateur Championship, when she earned medalist honors by shooting a 1-under 71 at Blue Hill Country Club on August 7th.
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 116th 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. Grace Keyes, a pioneer for Women’s Amateur golf in the Bay State was its first Champion. 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, 2019 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 36 holes to the low 16 scorers who will advance to Match Play in the Championship Flight. Low finishers 17-32 will advance to Match Play in the President’s Cup Flight.
Schedule of Play: Eighteen holes of stroke play are scheduled on Monday, August 12 and Tuesday August 13 at Weston Golf Club. The low 16 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 16 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 2018: Norton’s Shannon Johnson of Thorny Lea Golf Club was able to take home her first ever Massachusetts Women’s Amateur Championship, as she defeated Claire Sheldon of The Country Club 3&2. Johnson had an impressive championship last year, never letting any of her matches get to the 18th hole. She was victorious over Cheryl Krueger of the Orchards Golf Club 5&4 in her opening match and would continue that success by defeating Elise Keane of Marshfield Country Club 5&4 as well. After defeating Angela Garvin of the Ranch Golf Club 2&1 in her quarter final match, Johnson went on to win against Jacqueline Gonzalez of Charles River Country Club 5&3 in her semifinals match.
Past Champions in the Field: The following competitors have been victorious at this event in the Championship Flight and are a part of the 2019 Championship Proper field.
Par and Yardage: Weston Golf Club will be set up at approximately 6,000 yards and will play to a par of 73. The front nine will be a par-37 while the back nine will be a par-36.
|Hole||10||11||12||13||14||15||16||17||18 In Total|
|Par||3||4||4||4||5||4||4||3||5 36 73|
|Yardage||142||365||300||364||419||346||344||116||444 2840 5882|
Most Victories: 7 (Anne Marie Tobin. – 1988, 1991-1995, 2000)
Most Times as a Host Club: 15 (Brae Burn Country Club)
Last Competitor to Defend: Isabel Southard (2014-15)
Total Number of Mass Golf Member Clubs Represented: 60
Most Represented Mass Golf Member Clubs: Weston Golf Club (6)
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.