Storylines And Tidbits For 2005 U.S. Women's Amateur

Statistical Information On 2005 U.S. Women’s Amateur

Average age of field: 20.5

Oldest player: Elizabeth Haines, 57 (2004 USGA Senior Women’s Amateur runner-up)

Youngest player: Kristina Wong, 14 years, 2 months, 11 days

Oldest sectional qualifier: Ellen Port, 43

Number of players under age of 18: 37

Number of mid-amateur competitors (25 and older): 12

Celebrating birthdays week of championship:

Christi Athas turns 20 on Aug. 7

Esther Choe turns 16 on Aug. 7

Amanda Costner turned 20 on July 31 (day before event starts)

Nicole Hage turns 20 on Aug. 4

Seiko Onoue turns 21 on Aug. 5

Georgia on their minds: There are nine contestants with connections to the state, whether they are residents or part of the college system.

Number of foreign-born contestants: 33

Number of different countries represented from that group: 16

Breakdown of those countries: Korea (10); Canada (5); Mexico (3); Colombia (2); Australia (2); Philippines; Peru; Russia; New Zealand; Spain; Japan; Venezuela; South Africa; Brazil; Germany; Chinese Taipei

Number of left-handers in field: 3 (two are from Canada)

Players who competed in the 2005 Girls’ Junior: 31

Players who competed in the 2005 U.S. Women’s Amateur Public Links: 36

Players who competed in 2005 Girls’ Junior and WAPL: 7

Number of 2005 NCAA Division I All-Americas in field: 12

Number of 2005 NCAA Division II All-Americas in field: 1

Number of 2005 NCAA Division III All-Americas in field: 2

Number of 2004 American Junior Golf Association All-Americas in field: 18

Number of USGA champions in field: 11

Now a look at some of the individual players in the field

At the age of 12, Brittany Altomare, 14, of Shrewsbury, Mass., broke the course record at the International Country Club in Bolton, Mass., with a 66. Altomare owns one hole-in-one and says she needs to eat waffles before competing in tournaments for good luck.

Liliana Alvarez, 21, of Durango, Mexico, won her country’s amateur in 2004. She also was on the Dean’s list at Texas Christian University in 2004.

Lorraine Ballerano’s first shot at a USGA event was quite memorable. At the 1999 U.S. Girls’ Junior at Green Spring Valley Hunt Club in Owings Mills, Md., she hit a 5-wood to 6 inches for a kick-in birdie even though her hands were shaking from nerves. The 20-year-old from Myrtle Beach, S.C., has been named to the Dean’s list three times at North Carolina State and was the 2000 Beth Daniel Player of the Year in South Carolina.

Because her father, Dennis, was in the Air Force, Jackie Beers, 21, of Bonaire, Ga., has lived in seven different states. A senior-to-be at the University of Georgia, Beers has made the Dean’s list twice (2003-04) and is a member of the Delta Epsilon Iota Academic Honor Society.

Amanda Blumenherst, 18, of Scottsdale, Ariz., went undefeated in the 2002 PING Junior Solheim Cup and delivered the speech at the closing ceremonies. She also won 10 American Junior Golf Association titles, including the 2004 Betsy Rawls Girls’ Championship. She won back-to-back Arizona State 5A high school titles.

Marlowe Boukis, 18, of Lutherville, Md., was the MVP of her high school boys’ varsity golf team two years in a row. She won the Maryland State Girls’ Junior Amateur in 2003 and ’04. She will attend Princeton University in the fall.

Shannon Boyle, 20, of Cary N.C., performed on the stage at Carnegie Hall in New York and worked on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange prior to coming to the 2005 Women’s Amateur. She has been on the Dean’s list at the University of North Carolina the past two years.

When she was 5 years old, Brianna Broderick of Richmond, Mo., finished eighth in the country in National Speed Skating (roller skates). The 20-year-old junior-to-be at the University of Michigan lists meeting former LPGA player Dottie Pepper at the 2004 U.S. Women’s Amateur as her most memorable moment in golf.

Heather Burgner, 18, of Lakeland, Fla., was a maintained a 4.171 GPA throughout high school and was a three-year member of the National Honor Society.

RemiJin Camping, 18, of Hollywood, Fla., is a lefty but plays golf right-handed. Born in the Philippines, Camping was home-schooled from the sixth through the 12th grade. She was the NCAA Division II Freshman of the Year and first-team All-American this past season at Barry University in Florida.

Irene Choe, 20, of La Habra, Calif., used to figure skate from the age of 4 until she quit at age 11. She was a NCAA Division I All-America in 2003 and 2004 at the University of Southern California.

Esther Choe, 15, of Scottsdale, Ariz., lists playing a practice round with world No. 1 Annika Sorenstam at the 2005 U.S. Women’s Open as her most memorable golf moment. Choe captured the 2005 Rolex Tournament of Champions, a major event on the American Junior Golf Association circuit, the 2004 British Junior Open and the 2003 Junior Orange Bowl International. She was a member of the 2003 USA Junior Solheim Cup team.

Tiffany Chudy, 19, of Miramar, Fla., was the runner-up at the 2005 U.S. Women’s Amateur Public Links Championship.

Mari Chun, 17, of Pearl City, Hawaii, was the stroke-play medalist at the 2005 U.S. Women’s Amateur Public Links Championship and the 2004 U.S. Girls’ Junior. She received straight-As in high school and will attend Stanford University in the fall.

Laura Coble, 41, of Augusta, Ga., is celebrating a 20-year anniversary of sorts this week. The only other time she qualified for the Women’s Amateur was in 1985. She is a three-time Georgia Women’s State Amateur champion and she won the 2004 Georgia Women’s Open.

Kaitlin Conway, 16, of Wading River, N.Y., does not have to look too far for golf instruction. Her father, James, is a PGA professional.

Carolyn Creekmore, 53, of Dallas, Texas, is the reigning USGA Senior Women’s Amateur champion. This is her eighth Women’s Amateur. She recently represented the USA at the Copa de las Americas event in Mexico.

Emily Culbertson, 20, of Crestview Hills, Ky., once served as editor, writer and artist for her high school newspaper. The University of Kentucky junior-to-be was named Ms. Kentucky Golf in 2002 and was the Kentucky High School Sportswoman of the Year in 2003.

Kailin Downs, 22, of Bend, Ore., plans to play on the University of New Mexico women’s volleyball team this fall as a setter. She is a fifth-year senior. She once holed out from the fairway on a par 4 to qualify for the U.S. Girls’ Junior as a 14-year-old and at the 2002 U.S. Women’s Amateur at Sleepy Hollow, comedian/actor Bill Murray served as her caddie.

Kaitlin Drolson, 15, of Rancho Santa Fe, Calif., volunteers weekly for a program called Animeals, it’s like Meals on Wheels for the elderly. The program delivers food for their pets. She also loves to train horses.

Claire Dury, 23, of New Zealand, competed for her country at the 2004 Women’s World Amateur Team Championships in Puerto Rico where she placed 19th individually. She placed sixth at the NCAA Division I Women’s Championship last spring at Sunriver, Ore. Dury graduated from the University of California-Berkeley in the spring.

Courtney Ellenbogen, 14, of Blacksburg, Va., is a straight-A student and a member of student council at Blacksburg High. Her mother is a professor at Virginia Tech and her father played professional football for the New York Giants.

Megan Grehan, 16, of Mamaroneck, N.Y., has already competed in two U.S. Women’s Opens. She won the New York State Women’s Amateur in 2002 and ’03.

Virginia Derby Grimes, 41, of York, Ala., is the 1998 U.S. Women’s Mid-Amateur champion (2004 runner-up) and helped Alabama captured the USGA Women’s State Team Championship in 1997. She also is a two-time former USA Curtis Cupper and was enshrined in the Alabama Sports Hall of Fame in 2004. The Auburn University golf tournament was renamed in 1998 in her honor (Auburn Tiger Derby Invitational).

Anna Grzebien, 20, of Narragansett, R.I., is the reigning NCAA Division I champion (Duke University). Her two older sisters, Lauren and Mary Ellen, have also competed in USGA events. She was the recipient of the 2005 Honda Award given to the nation’s top collegiate women’s golfer and was a first-team All-American.

Elizabeth Haines, 57, of Gladwyne, Pa., was the 2004 USGA Senior Women’s Amateur runner-up and competed on the winning Pennsylvania team at the 1995 USGA Women’s State Team Championship. She has five holes-in-one and one double eagle.

Jill Hardy, 24, of Winnipeg, Man., Canada, is entering her seventh year of studies at the University of Manitoba. She spent three years studying science and is entering her fourth year in the School of Pharmacy. She was a member of the 2005 Canadian National Team and played competitive ice hockey and softball.

Mina Harigae, 15, of Monterey, Calif., has won the last four California State Women’s Amasteurs, the first coming in 2001 at the age of 11. She played in the First Tee Open on the Champions Tour with 1982 U.S. Open champion and five-time British Open winner Tom Watson. Her lowest score was a 62 at Sea Island Golf Club’s Seaside Course during the 2004 AJGA Polo Classic.

Kathy Hartwiger, 39, of Birmingham, Ala., won the 2002 U.S. Women’s Mid-Amateur and helped Alabama capture the 1997 USGA Women’s State Team title. Her instructor, Michele Drinkard, will caddie for her at the Women’s Amateur. She was inducted into the Birmingham Golf Association Hall of Fame in July 2005.

Paige Haverty, 21, of Greenville, N.C., enjoys windsurfing on the Outer Banks of North Carolina and teaches junior windsurfers.

Nannette Hill, 18, of Pelham Manor, N.Y., and a freshman-to-be at Wake Forest University, was the youngest winner of the New York State Junior Girls Championship at the age of 13.

Jennifer Hong, 18, of Windermere, Fla., graduated Summa Cum Laude from her high school and was her class valedictorian. At 14, she qualified for match play at the 2001 U.S. Women’s Amateur and lost to Carol Semple Thompson in the first round.

Elizabeth Janangelo, 21, of West Hartford, Conn., was a member of the 2004 USA Curtis Cup team and helped Duke win the NCAA Division I team title this past May. Her caddie this week is Amy Kirouac, the daughter of 2004 USA Curtis Cup captain Martha Kirouac. She is a three-time winner of the Connecticut Women’s Open and has won six collegiate events. In 2004, she was the NCAA Division I Player of the Year.

Emma Jandel, 17, of Dayton, Ohio earned honorable-mention all-state honors as a basketball player at Oakwood High, where she will be a senior this fall. She also was captain of the school’s boys golf team in 2004 and 2005.

Michelle Jarman, 20, of Wilmington, N.C., had quite a highlight as a freshman in high school when she played with 1992 Masters champion Fred Couples at Winding River Plantation. The University of North Carolina-Wilmington senior-to-be was the 2005 Colonial Athletic Association’s Scholar Athlete of the Year.

Dana Je, 21, of Korea won her country’s junior championship in 1996 and 1997, and captured the Seoul Junior Championship from 1996-98. She was the Korean Player of the Year in 1998 and ’99.

Lauren Johnson, 18, of The Woodlands, Texas, learned to play golf on a sand course in Dhahran, Saudi Arabia where she lived until 1997.

Taylore Karle, 15, of Scottsdale, Ariz., established a scoring record at USGA championships with a 36-hole total of 130 at the 2005 U.S. Girls’ Junior at BanBury Golf Club in Eagle, Idaho. At Notre Dame Prep she earned the Amazing Athlete Academic Award with a 3.97 GPA. And just like Tiger Woods, she always wears red on the last day of a competition.

If people think Ali Kicklighter, 21, of Deland, Fla., has a sense of humor she can say she got it from her cousin, comedian Jeff Foxworthy. Kicklighter also was a three-time national champion speed skater and once was named Wee Miss Hawaiian Tropic.

In-Kyung Kim, 17, of Korea won the 2005 U.S. Girls’ Junior. She spoke no English before coming to the U.S. to attend a golf academy in Hilton Head Island, S.C., but her command of the language is getting better.

Alina Lee, 15, of Athens, Ga., is getting quite a head start to her college career. She skipped two grades and graduated from her high school in just three years. Lee will be a freshman this fall at the University of Georgia.

Eun Jung Lee, 17, of Korea won the 2005 U.S. Women’s Amateur Public Links Championship, rallying from 5 down in the second 18 to defeat Tiffany Chudy in 37 holes.

Korean-born Kasi Lee, 18, of Paramus, N.J., can use the first four letters of her name as an acronym for the countries she has lived in: Korea, Argentina, Switzerland and Ireland. She will be a freshman at Tulane University in the fall.

Taylor Leon, 18, of Dallas, Texas, eagled the last hole of her match at the 2003 Junior Solheim Cup to help her U.S. team win that day’s competition. Both of her brothers, Trent and Tyler, are outstanding golfers, with the latter competing for Oklahoma State.

Maggie Loney, 21, of River Falls, Wis., was a NCAA Division III first-team All-American this past season at the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire.

Audry Longo, 22, of Middletown, Conn., earned honorable-mention NCAA Division III All-America honors at Mount Holyoke College in 2005. On June, Longo’s boyfriend, Benjamin Cusson, proposed to her on a putting green at the TPC at Jasna Polana in Princeton, N.J. Cusson will caddie for her this week.

Tiffany Lua, 14, of Rowland Heights, Calif., is the youngest competitor in the field.

Paige Mackenzie, 22, of Yakima, Wash., sustained a back injury her sophomore year at the University of Washington in which she had stress fractures and a bulging disc that kept her sidelines for 10 months. She did get to watch her brother, Brock, compete at the 2003 Walker Cup for the USA at Ganton Golf Club in England. Mackenzie just captured the 2005 Women’s Trans-National, beating Elizabeth Janangelo in the final. She was an honorable-mention NCAA All-American this past season.

Kelly MacWhinnie, 20, of Pittsburgh, Pa., is a little superstitious. She carries a small piece of her childhood blanket on her golf bag.

Maru Martinez, 21, of Venezuela was a semifinalist at the 2002 U.S. Women’s Amateur and a second-team NCAA Division I All-American this past season for Auburn University.

Laura Matthews, 25, of Canada helped her country finish second at the 2004 Women’s World Amateur Team Championship in Puerto Rico. She led Canada to a win at the 2003 Copas de las Americas event in Puerto Rico and is a four-time runner-up at the Canadian Ladies Amateur.

Besides playing on the Texas A&M women’s golf team, Nicole Melton, 22, of San Antonio, Texas, plans on joining the school’s Tae Kwon Do squad.

The Women’s Amateur likely will be the last amateur competition for Tina Miller, 22, of Miami, Fla. She has received a sponsor’s exemption into the LPGA Tour’s Wendy’s Championship later this summer and plans to make her professional debut at the event.

The talents of Noriko Nakazaki don’t just exist on the golf course. The 20-year-old from Hanover Park, Ill., and a junior-to-be at the University of Notre Dame played violin and viola for her high school orchestra. She was also on her high school’s math team.

Seiko Onoue, 20, of Long Beach, Calif., has had quite a brush with U.S. Commander in Chiefs. She met former President Bill Clinton at Riviera Country Club in Los Angeles and she met President George Bush at the White House.

When she’s not golfing, you might find Ryann O’Toole, 18, of San Clemente at one of southern California’s famous beaches riding the waves on a surfboard. She also enjoys playing the guitar.

South African-born Candice Palmer, 20, of Santa Clara, Calif., had arthroscopic knee surgery in April and rehabbed for three months before returning to competitive golf.

Jane Park, 18, of Rancho Cucamonga, Calif., is the reigning U.S. Women’s Amateur champion and competed on the victorious 2004 USA Curtis Cup team as well as the ’04 USA Women’s World Amateur Team.

Jenna Pearson, 19, of Wheaton, Ill., was on the Dean’s list in 2005 at the University of South Carolina.

Ellen Port, 43, of St. Louis, Mo., is the oldest sectional qualifier for this year’s event and a three-time U.S. Women’s Mid-Amateur champion. She also played on two USA Curtis Cup teams (1994 and ’96).

Amber Prange, 20, of Noblesville, Ind., has an older sister, Ashley, who competes on the Futures Tour and caddied for her at the Women’s Amateur qualifier. The University of Washington junior-to-be finished in the top 16 at the NCAAs and was a quarterfinalist at the 2001 U.S. Girls’ Junior.

Morgan Pressel, 17, of Boca Raton, Fla., nearly became the youngest major champion in the history of golf in June when she tied for second at the U.S. Women’s Open. Her uncle, Aaron Krickstein, was a former professional tennis player. She is the youngest to ever qualifier for a Women’s Open, doing so as a 12-year-old in 2001. She also is the youngest winner of the North and South Women’s Amateur, winning that event in 2004. She also has won all five of the American Junior Golf Association’s “major” events, completing that feat by winning the Betsy Rawls Girls’ Championship a week prior to the Women’s Amateur. She is a member of the Cum Laude Society at the Saint Andrews School. Has verbally committed to attend Duke University in fall of 2006.

Kristina Rothengatter, 21, of Germany won the 2001 Austrian Ladies Amateur and has been an academic All-America the past two years at Southern Methodist University.

Sisters Abigal (19) and Candice (17) Schepperle of Hoover, Ala., are competing together this week. Mom (Kim) and dad (David) are each carrying a bag in the championship. Mom will “loop” for Abigal and dad gets Candice’s bag.

Amy Scmucker, 21, of Cold Spring, Minn., has a dream to do her own cooking show someday. The University of Michigan senior-to-be won the 2005 Minnesota Women’s Open.

Chelsea Schriewer, 18, of St. Charles, Mo., lived in Chinese Taipei for two years while in grade school.

Margaret Shirley, 19, does not have to travel too far this week. The Roswell, Ga., resident can stay at home and compete in the championship. Among the Auburn University sophomore’s hobbies: snow skiing and poker.

Laura Tereby, 21, of Baltimore, Md., graduated from Radford University with a 4.0 GPA. She qualified for the 2005 U.S. Women’s Open, but missed the cut.

Carol Semple Thompson, 56, of Sewickley, Pa., is competing in her 100th USGA championship. She has won seven USGA titles, including the 1973 U.S. Women’s Amateur and competed on 12 USA Curtis Cup teams. She will be the 2006 USA Curtis Cup captain.

Corey Weworski, 43, of Carlsbad, Calif., is the reigning U.S. Women's Mid-Amateur champion.

Kristin Wetzel, 17, of Middletown, N.Y., is an accomplished flute player and a published poet. The past two years, she has been No. 1 in her class at Hilton Head Preparatory, where she’ll be a senior this fall.

Juli Wightman, 19, of Chicopee, Mass., has an interesting heritage. Her grandfather was the chief of Loa Loa Village in American Samoa. Wightman, a sophomore-to-be at Brigham Young University, was the Mountain West Conference Freshman of the Year.

Annie Thurman-Young, 22, of Highland, Utah, won the 2002 U.S. Women’s Amateur Public Links and was on the 2004 USA Curtis Cup team. She recently graduated from Oklahoma State, where she earned first-team All-American honors this past year.

Text and statistics compiled by USGA staff writer David Shefter. E-mail him with questions or comments at dshefter@usga.org.

 

 

U.S. Women’s Amateur Championship

TICKETS – Admission and parking for all seven days of the championship are free of charge.

WHO CAN PLAY? – The U.S. Women’s Amateur is open to female amateurs who have USGA Handicap Indexes not exceeding 5.4. Entries closed June 15.

DEFENDING CHAMPION – Jane Park, 18, or Rancho Cucamonga, Calif., will defend the title she won in 2004.

THE FIELD – The 2005 field will include seven Georgia players. They are Laura Coble of Augusta, Jackie Beers of Bonaire, Alina Lee of Evans, Kyu Ri Ban of Duluth, Dori Carter of Valdosta, Diana Ramage of Fayetteville and Margaret Shirley of Roswell.

TELEVISION COVERAGE – Match-play rounds will be telecast on The Golf Channel Aug. 3-7 from 4-6 p.m., EDT.

OTHER PROMINENT PAST CHAMPIONS – Patty Berg, 1938; Betty Jameson, 1939, 1940; Babe Didrickson Zaharias, 1946; Louise Suggs, 1947; Beth Daniel, 1975, 1977; Juli Simpson (Inkster), 1980, 1981, 1982; Pat Hurst, 1990; Kelli Kuehne, 1995, 1996; Grace Park, 1998; Dorothy Delasin, 1999.

CHAMPIONSHIP COURSE CONDITIONS – The following mowing heights will be used for the championship: fairways 1/2"; tees 7/16"; collars 1/4". Putting greens will be prepared so that they are firm and fast; to measure approximately 11 feet on the USGA Stimpmeter. Intermediate rough: 1", width approximately 72" along fairways, width approximately 30" wide around putting greens. Primary rough: 2 1/4".

FUTURE WOMEN’S AMATEUR CHAMPIONSHIP SITES – The 2006 U. S. Women’s Amateur will be conducted at Pumpkin Ridge G.C., North Plains, Ore., Aug. 7 – 13.

MEDIA CONTACT – The Media Center for the U.S. Women’s Amateur will be located in the main clubhouse at Ansley Golf Club. Rhonda Glenn and Beth Murrison will be the USGA staff members on site. The Media Center phone numbers are (678)639-7488 and (678)639-7494.

 

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