BRENTWOOD, TN (June 15, 2015) -- The 115th Women’s Western Golf Association’s National Amateur Championship is underway at Nashville Golf & Athletic Club in Brentwood, Tenn. The women’s course record has endured for the past 28 years when Kathleen McCarthy from Fresno, Calif. (then a Senior at Stanford University) posted a 67 in the qualifying round when this tournament was last held at Nashville Golf & Athletic Club in 1987.
The course is set at 6073 yards, par 36-36-72. Seventeen-year-old Allisen Corpuz from Honolulu, Hi. was the first player to post a 4-under 68 in the first round of the two-day stroke play qualifier. She said, “I played a smooth round. There’s a lot of placing the ball on this course but my ball striking has been solid. Yesterday I worked on practicing putts within 6 feet and it paid off today.” She had a 34 on the front nine with birdies on the par 5, 492 yard 3rd hole; again on the 4th hole, par 4, 331 yards and the par 3, 160 yard 8th hole; the only bogey came on the 9th hole, a 363 yard par 4. On the back nine she birdied the 11th hole, par 4, 354 yards and from 30 yards out chipped in for an eagle 3 on the 520 yard 18th hole.
The next player to post a 68 was Sierra Brooks from Sorrento, Fla. She was even par on the front side and 4-under on the back side; her birdie string started on the 13th hole, 444 yard par 5 and continued on the 14th and 15th with her final birdie on the 18th par 5 hole. “I’ve been working hard on my game and things are starting to click.”
Shooting a 3-under 69, Hanley Long from Clarksville, Tenn. said, “I was 3-under on the front nine and at one time had it down to 5-under but had back-to-back bogies on 15 and 16 but birdied 18.” She continued, “I made a lot of putts that I don’t normally make; overall it was the best round for the yardage that I have had.” Naomi Ko from Victoria, B.C., Canada shot a 2-under par 70. At 1-under 71 was Lauren Hartlage, Elizabethtown, Ky. and Allison Lindley from Kokomo, Ind. who had a 31 on the front nine and 40 on the back.
Tied at even par 72 are Abbey Carlson, Lake Mary, Fla.; Harley Dubskey from Valapariso, Ind.; Fai Khamborn, Thailand and Kelly Whaley, Farmington, Conn.
Last year’s Champion, Mika Liu from Beverly Hills, Calif. was a late withdrawal, although disappointing not to have her defend her title, the field of 152 representing 30 states and six foreign countries will now be vying for the 115-year-old W. A. Alexander silver Cup which carries a prominent list of champions names from the past including Patty Berg, Louise Suggs, Betty Jameson, Betsy Rawls, Beth Daniel, Nancy Lopez, JoAnne Gunderson Carner to name just a few and more recent winners and LPGA superstars Cristie Kerr, Stacy Lewis and Brittany Lang.
Stroke play qualifying will continue Tuesday. At the conclusion of play, the low 64 players will go into the Championship Flight of 64; all other players will go into Flights of 16. Match Play will begin on Wednesday morning with the first pairing going off at 6:45 a.m.
There are eleven players from the Volunteer State of Tennessee playing: Sophia Schubert from Oak Ridge; Riley Rennell, Columbia; Blakesly Warren, Chattanooga; Samantha Griffith, Oolewah; Allison Woodward, Unicoi; Katie Story, Dickson; Hanley Long, Clarksville; Teleri Hughes, Knoxville; Jenna Burris, Manchester; Sam Burrus, Nashville and Rachel Johnson, Nashville.