- Golfer Benefits
Once again, Massachusetts is bringing one of the most talented and experienced groups to the U.S. Women’s Mid-Amateur Championship. This year, there were 437 entries, the most since 2007, and six Mass Golf members are in championship field of 132 players, all of whom are 25 years and older.
Shannon Johnson (Thorny Lea Golf Club) is surely among the players to watch as the 2018 champion made it to the semifinals last year. Her clubmate and close friend Megan Buck is also on the radar after winning the Mass Women’s Mid-Amateur last week. Buck was T6 in stroke play last year and fell to eventual champion Blakesly Brock, in the Round of 32.
Senior standout Tracy Welch (The Country Club) has also earned a return trip to the U.S. Women’s Mid-Amateur, as has Mary Mulcahy (Hatherly Country Club), a former standout at the University of Central Florida. Tracy Martin (Vesper Country Club) and Mary Chamberlain (Cummaquid Golf Club) round out the Bay State players in the field.
The U.S. Women’s Mid-Amateur begins with 18 holes of stroke play this Saturday and Sunday at Fiddlesticks’ Long Mean Course (6137-yards, par-72). The low 64 players advance to match play beginning Monday and playing out through Thursday.
Scroll down to for more information on the Mass Golf members competing, as well as starting times for each of them.
Saturday, Sept. 17 (Stroke Play, Round 1, 18 holes)
Sunday, Sept. 18 (Stroke Play, Round 2, 18 holes)
Monday, Sept. 19 (Round of 64, match play)
Tuesday, Sept. 20 (Round of 32/Round of 16, match play)
Wednesday, Sept. 21 (Quarterfinals/Semifinals, match play)
Thursday, Sept. 22 (Championship Match, 36 holes)
Shannon Johnson, 39, reached the semifinals of the 2021 U.S. Women’s Mid-Amateur at Berkeley Hall Club in Bluffton, S.C., losing to eventual champion Blakesly Brock in 19 holes. She won the 2018 U.S. Women’s Mid-Amateur Championship at Norwood Hills Country Club in St. Louis, Mo., after finishing as the runner-up in 2016. Johnson, a field representative for a major golf manufacturer, is playing in her 19th USGA® championship and eighth U.S. Women’s Mid-Amateur. She was runner-up in the 2021 Massachusetts Women’s Amateur this August.
“I’m excited to go play. It’s something that we talk about all year and it’s finally here and we get to go play,” Johnson said. “I’ve never played the golf course, but I’ve heard great things about it. It will great to get down there and reunite with my caddy Matt and see my parents and get the week started.”
Buck has also found success in the U.S. Women’s Mid-Amateur, having made a run all the way to the quarterfinals back in 2019. Now coming off her Mass Women’s Mid-Amateur victory, Buck is hoping for further success.
“These USGA events are always such a treat,” Buck said. “As amateur golfers these events are what we strive for. I am excited to make the trip to Florida, especially with the other Massachusetts golfers.”
Mary Chamberlain has had many accolades in the Bay State over the years, having won the Mass Women’s Amateur and New England Women’s Amateur in the past.
Now as a mid-amateur golfer, it’s more difficult to find time to practice consistently, but the 34-year-old Cape Cod native, has found a way to make it work and can now add playing in a USGA championship to her resume.
“It’s a different feeling, it’s my first to the big dance for this age group,” she said. “I know competitive golf takes on a different feel when you’re working full time, and trying to squeeze in practice and play. I think that makes it more special because we’re trying to do it all.”
Chamberlain has some familiarity with Florida golf. Though she graduated from James Madison University and played on the women’s golf team there, her program used to host an event in Florida.
“I have experience, but I hope it’s not much to reacclimatize,” she said. “People say nothing but the nicest things [about] Fiddlesticks. I’d expect nothing less. I know the course will be in prestine shape.”
Tracy Welch is surely racking up some mileage for golf travel this year. Earlier this summer, the senior standout played through the Round of 32 at the U.S. Senior Amateur in Alaska, the first USGA championship held in the state (she made the first hole-in-one in the process).
Now she heads to Florida for an event she’s more familiar with as this is her 13th U.S. Women’s Mid-Amateur. Welch, who last competed in the event in 2018, qualified this time by earning medalist honors at the Walpole Country Club qualifier last month.
“It’s been an exciting summer,” Welch said. “Obviously being a senior now, I’m like double the age of some of these contestants.”
Much like Chamberlain and the other working women in the field, Mary Mulcahy is looking forward to getting away for a few days to play in a competition.
In her third trip to the U.S. Women’s Mid-Amateur, Mulcahy might have an inside edge as she played for the University of Central Florida and her parents have a condo in nearby Naples where she’s played many of the area’s course.
“I feel like I have an edge because I’ve played Bermuda grass, and you know how it’ll roll out, and I know how to read it well,” Mulcahy said. “I love it because you get shots that stick because the greens are soft.”
Mulcahy, however, is also going with something unfamiliar — a new set of irons and wedges.
“They came in last Thursday, so I’m going to go with them,” Mulcahy said. “The clubs I have are 10 years old. This new set is going to help.”
To qualify this year, Mulcahy was in the same group at medalist Tracy Welch, who pushed her to play well.
“She was great, and there was a point where she had a few bad holes, so I was trying to be medalist,” Mulcahy said. “We have a good mid-am group. I feel lucky to represent Massachusetts on a national stage.”
Tracy Martin also has some experience playing down south as she was a member of the University of Richmond women’s golf team. There she ended her career with the second-best scoring average in program history at 78.44.
Flash forward a decade later, and Martin is still hitting it well, as she played herself into this year’s U.S. Women’s Mid-Amateur with a stellar performance in the qualifier in New Hampshire, where she grew up.
Earlier this year, she advanced to a playoff in the Mass Mixed Four-Ball Championship playing alongside James Pleat.
Tracy Martin (Wakefield)
Round 1: Tee 1 – 8:05 a.m. | Round 2: Tee 10 – 12:35 p.m.
Megan Buck (North Easton)
Round 1: Tee 10 – 8:05 a.m. | Round 2: Tee 1 – 12:35 p.m.
Shannon Johnson (North Easton)
Round 1: Tee 1 – 8:25 a.m. | Round 2: Tee 10 – 12:55 p.m.
Tracy Welch (Winchester)
Round 1: Tee 1 – 8:45 a.m. | Round 2: Tee 10 – 1:15 p.m.
Mary Mulcahy (Scituate)
Round 1: Tee 10 – 12:35 p.m. | Round 2: Tee 1 – 8:05 a.m.
Mary Chamberlain (South Dennis)
Round 1: Tee 10 – 1:45 p.m. | Round 2: Tee 1 – 9:15 a.m.
Fiddlesticks C.C. features 36 holes of golf – The Long Mean Course (used for the Championship Proper) and the Loch Ness Course. Both layouts were designed by Ron Garl. While the fairways are open, the Long Mean Course offers more trouble than its sister course, where waste bunkers or water hazards come into play on 75 percent of the layout. The Loch Ness Course, previously known as the Wee Friendly, was redesigned by Bob Cupp in 1999.
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