Laney Frye, Latanna Stone and Alice Zhao
, Alice Zhao
and Laney Frye
shared medalist honors at the U.S. Women's Amateur being held at Chambers Bay in University Place, Wash., marking the first time since the 2010 tournament has had tri-medalists.
Only time will tell if one of the three will become the first medalist to claim the Robert Cox Trophy since Amanda Blumenhurst in 2008.
Zhao and Stone carved out a bit of history for themselves on Tuesday.
The second youngest player in the field, Zhao followed her opening round of 6-under 67 with a 4-under 69 on Tuesday to become the youngest medalist in U.S. Women's Amateur history.
“I had a couple of mistakes, but otherwise I played pretty solid today,” said Zhao. “I think I missed two short birdie putts. I really like match play, so hopefully I can put together another couple good rounds.”
Stone, who started the day in a tie for 12th place, got off to a red-hot start on Tuesday, collecting birdies on the par 5, 514-yard first and the par 4 second hole. She added birdies on the par 4, 505-yard fourth, the par 4 seventh and the par 3 ninth to turn at 5-under 32.
With three birdies on the back nine, including on two of the par 5s, the LSU senior carded 33 on her inward nine for her 65, which was the lowest score ever recorded in the U.S. Women's Amateur.
“Just like yesterday, everything was working well,” said Stone. “I was hitting the ball great and putted really well. Putting kind of saved me a little bit today. But it’s just fairways and greens and keeping it simple.
“I'm really pumped for match play. I think I can play really aggressive – even more aggressive than I did in stroke play. Yeah, I’m excited.”
There is another Kentucky Wildcat on the prowl at Chambers Bay. One year after Jensen Castle won the U.S. Women's Amateur at Westchester Country Club, her teammate Frye earned a share of medalist honors at 10-under after turning in her second consecutive 5-under 68 on Tuesday.
Playing in the group behind Zhao, Frye had a 15-foot birdie putt on the par-5 18th hole that would have put her at 11 under par. It slid by, resulting in the three-way tie at the top.
“The conditions were mild today,” said Frye. “I think I got the better end of the draw going early/late. Not a ton of wind. It was kind of in a different direction, so that took a little adjustment. But the course is perfect. It’s getting firmer and faster, all you can ask for.”
As for Castle, the defending champion is tied for 14th at 4-under 142.
There is no shortage of star power near the top of the leaderboard.
, last year's AJGA Rolex Female Player of the year who dazzled the gallery at the 2021 U.S. Women's Open at the Olympic Club
, and her Curtis Cup teammate, USC sophomore Amari Avery
, are part of a pack that sits at 7-under.
The cutline came at 4-over, leaving eight players battling for four spots to round out the 64-player match play field.
Jieni Li, Jennifer Rosenberg and Camryn Carreon all made par to qualify. Alice Hodge was eliminated with a double bogey, and Victoria Zheng, Julia Misemer, Emma Abramson and Anika Dy made bogey to move on to the second playoff hole. Playing the par-3 17th, all but Abramson made par and the playoff was suspended due to darkness. It will resume on Wednesday at 7:30 a.m. PT with Zheng, Misemer and Dy playing the par-5 18th hole to determine the final match-play qualifier.
It was just last year at Westchester Country Club when Castle survived a 12-for-2 playoff and rode a heater all the way to the Robert Cox Trophy.
The only mid-amateur (age 25 and older) to make match play is 26-year-old Aliea Clark
, of New York, N.Y. The runner-up in last year’s U.S. Women’s Mid-Amateur
, Clark is halfway through a two-year graduate program at NYU, where she played a semester on the golf team after playing three years as an undergraduate at UCLA. Clark shot 75-72—147.
After turning heads with a 1-over 74 yesterday, seven-time USGA champion Ellen Port
, the oldest player in the field, struggled in the second round to miss match play. She will now set her sights on a championship she has won four times – the U.S. Women’s Mid-Amateur, to be held Sept. 17-22 at Fiddlesticks Country Club in Fort Myers, Fla.
The Round of 64 begins at 9 a.m. PT on Wednesday and will be broadcast on Golf Channel from 3-6 p.m. PT (6-9 p.m. ET).
The USGA contributed to this report.
ABOUT THE U.S. Women's Amateur
The U.S. Women's Amateur, the third
the USGA championships, was first played
at Meadowbrook Club in Hempstead, N.Y.
event is open to any female amateur who
USGA Handicap Index not exceeding 5.4.
Women's Amateur is one of 14 national
championships conducted annually by the
10 of which are strictly for amateurs.
View Complete Tournament Information