Semple Thompson Continues On; Medalist And Defending Champion Eliminated
Scarborough, N.Y. – Facing the music at 53, figuratively and literally, Carol Semple Thompson advanced to the third round of match play Wednesday evening at the 102nd Women’s Amateur.
After dispatching Lindsay Morgan, 20, of Walla Walla, Wash., 1 up, Thompson’s mother -- Phyllis Semple sat by herself at a baby grand piano and delved into a stirring rendition of “Oh, You Beautiful Doll.”
It was befitting of the six-time USGA championship winner. Thompson, who admitted afterward that she didn’t expect to go very far, keeps chugging along and has as strong a chance of lasting deep into the event as anyone else.
The102nd U.S. Women’s Amateur is being contested at the 6,190-yard, par-71 Sleepy Hollow Country Club.
Thompson sank two critical putts on the 17th and 18th holes to move on. At No. 17, she tapped in a downhill 12-footer to go 1 up. Then on No. 18, she saved her best for last, steering in another downhill putt – this one for birdie. It was more impressive than the one on No. 17 because, not only was it downhill, but it was going against the grain.
“I’m always surprised,” said Thompson, a member of the winning USA Curtis Cup team. “I never expect them to go in. I’m thrilled.”
Thompson first defeated 17-year-old Mallory Code of Tampa, Fla., in the morning match, 5 and 3, before taking on Morgan.
“Lindsay was good to me on a few holes,” said Thompson.
“I put myself in the wrong places. The putter can make up for so much.”
On an oppressive day, a few things were learned. The defending champ won’t be repeating, the medalist didn’t get past the first round and this year’s Girls’ Junior champion will not become the first player in history to win the Girls’ Junior and Women’s Amateur in the same year.
One match was delayed until Thursday morning at 7:30 because of darkness. USA Curtis Cup player Angela Jerman, 22, of Columbus, Ga., was 1 up on Kristy McPherson, 21, of Conway, S.C., through 15 holes.
For the fourth time in five USGA match play events this year, a medalist has been eliminated in the first round.
After setting a Women’s Amateur stroke play mark by a medalist, 22-year-old Courtney Swaim of Sugar Hill, Ga., lost 2 and 1 to Elizabeth Janangelo, 18, of West Hartford, Conn. Janangelo later advanced to the round of 16 by beating 19-year-old Sunny Oh of Torrance, Calif., 4 and 3.
Swaim, a USA Curtis Cup team member, had qualified for match play with a 135 for 36 holes (7 under par) and was two strokes better than the 137 record fired by Natalie Gulbis in 1999. But all that meant nothing when Swaim and Janangelo walked onto the course Wednesday.
Janangelo, a semifinalist at the 2001 Girls’ Junior, secured the 64th spot in a 15-for-2 playoff. As darkness set in Tuesday, Janangelo drained a left-to-right 15-footer for birdie, setting off a flurry of fist pumps. It improved her playoff record to 1-9.
“I knew what I was getting into when I saw the draw,” said Swaim, playing in her third Women’s Amateur. “I knew she was a pretty good junior player. I didn’t beat myself; she beat me.
“Because I was the No. 1 player and she was the 64th player, that meant absolutely nothing.”
A case could be made for that. At the Women’s Amateur Public Links, medalist Jessica Reese was ousted by Sunny Oh, 9 and 7. In the Amateur Public Links Championship, Isaac Jimison lost to Tele Wightman, 2 up. And at the U.S. Junior Amateur, co-medalist Jared Texter was beaten by Shane Sigsbee, 2 up. (However, the other co-medalist, Tarik Can, did advance to the semifinals before falling). Girls’ Junior medalist In-Bee Park, 14, of Eustis, Fla., went on to win the championship.
In Janangelo’s later match against Oh, she sprinted to a 4-up lead after six holes. She carded five birdies to three bogeys. The heat forced her to change from a blue shirt in the morning to lighter threads in the afternoon.
“It’s very draining and the hills are tough,” said Janangelo. “I knew it would be tough so I did a lot of cardiovascular workouts, did a lot of conditioning and running.”
Janangelo will take on Becky Lucidi, 21, of Poway, Calif., who disposed of USA Curtis Cup team member Laura Myerscough, 22, Charleston, Ill., 3 and 1.
Defending champion Meredith Duncan, 22, of Shreveport, La., won’t be repeating. She was eliminated by 20-year-old Katherine Hull of Australia in 20 holes in a morning match. Hull later lost to 2000 Girls’ Junior champion Aree Wongluekiet, 16, of Bradenton, Fla., 4 and 3.
Duncan lost on the 20th hole when she narrowly missed an 8-footer.
“I missed a lot of putts. Period,” said Duncan.
She said she would take this away from being a Women’s Amateur champ: “It’s given me a lot of confidence. When I step on the tee, people are looking at me as the amateur champion.”
Park, the Girls’ Junior champion, was finally stopped. Mollie Frankhauser, a 21-year-old USA Curtis Cup member from Columbus, Ohio, won the match, 3 and 2.
Park was disappointed but confident she’ll be back.
“I had a few bad putts today,” said Park, who had defeated Lisa Ferrero of Lodi, Calif., in 19 holes earlier in the day. “I had two three-putts, but it’s been a good experience for me.”
The U.S. Women’s Amateur is one of 13 championships conducted by the United States Golf Association each year, 10 of which are strictly for amateurs.
The U.S. Women’s Amateur is open to female amateur golfers who have USGA handicap indexes not exceeding 5.4. Entries closed June 19.
After two rounds (36 holes) of stroke play, the lowest 64 scorers advanced to match play. The first two rounds of match play, consisting of 18 holes each, was scheduled for Wednesday, with the third round and quarterfinals set for Thursday. The semifinals are scheduled for Friday and the 36-hole final is set for Saturday.
Story written by Ken Klavon, USGA.
Round Of 32 Results
1:30 pm Elizabeth Janangelo, West Hartford, Conn. (151) def. Sunny Oh, Torrance, Calif.
(147), 4 and 3
1:38 pm Becky Lucidi, Poway, Calif. (144) def. Laura Myerscough, Charleston, Ill. (149), 3
1:46 pm Emily Bastel, Upper Sandusky, Ohio (141) def. Robin Burke, Houston, Texas
(148), 1 up
1:54 pm Christine Boucher, Canada (150) def. Sarah Jacobs, Whites Creek, Tenn. (146),
3 and 2
2:02 pm Erica Blasberg, Corona, Calif. (147) def. Alena Sharp, Canada (139), 4 and 3
2:10 pm Lindsey Wright, Australia (145) def. Meaghan Francella, Port Chester, N.Y. (143),
4 and 2
2:36 pm Walailak Satarak, Thailand (143) def. Mina Hardin, Ft Worth, Texas (148), 2 and
2:45 pm Aree Song Wongluekiet, Bradenton, Fla. (139) def. Katherine Hull, Australia
(146), 4 and 3
2:53 pm Brandi Jackson, Belton, S.C. (147) def. Danielle Downey, Spencerport, N.Y.
(138), 4 and 3
3:20 pm Vikki Laing, Scotland (144) def. Ellen Port, St Louis, Mo. (149), 3 and 2
3:28 pm Shayna Miyajima, Wailuku, Hawaii (146) def. Jennifer Perri, Eden Prairie, Minn.
(140), 6 and 4
3:45 pm Carol Semple Thompson, Sewickley, Pa. (139) def. Lindsay Morgan, Walla Walla,
Wash. (147), 1 up
3:53 pm Mollie Fankhauser, Columbus, Ohio (148) def. In-Bee Park, Eustis, Fla. (143), 3
4:17 pm Virada Nirapathpongporn, Thailand (145) def. Naree Song Wongluekiet,
Bradenton, Fla. (144), 5 and 4
4:45 pm Maru Martinez, Venezuela (140) def. Sukjin-Lee Wuesthoff, Toms River, N.J.
(146), 2 up
Round Of 16 Pairings
7:30 am Elizabeth Janangelo, West Hartford, Conn. (151) vs. Becky Lucidi, Poway, Calif.
7:40 am Emily Bastel, Upper Sandusky, Ohio (141) vs. Christine Boucher, Canada (150)
7:50 am Erica Blasberg, Corona, Calif. (147) vs. Lindsey Wright, Australia (145)
8:00 am Aree Song Wongluekiet, Bradenton, Fla. (139) vs. Walailak Satarak, Thailand
8:10 am Brandi Jackson, Belton, S.C. (147) vs. Vikki Laing, Scotland (144)
8:20 am Shayna Miyajima, Wailuku, Hawaii (146) vs. Mollie Fankhauser, Columbus, Ohio
8:30 am Carol Semple Thompson, Sewickley, Pa. (139) vs. Virada Nirapathpongporn,
8:40 am Maru Martinez, Venezuela (140) vs. To Be Determined