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Cathy Sherk

Mrs. Cathy Sherk, 28, of Fonthill, Ontario, Canada, became the first foreign player to win the Women's Amateur Championship since Miss Catherine Lacoste, of France, in 1969.

She defeated Mrs. Judith J. Oliver, of Sewickley, Pa., 4 and 3, in the scheduled 36-hole final at the Sunnybrook Golf Club, Plymouth Meeting, Pa.

Mrs. Sherk reached the final in 1977, but lost, 3 and 1, to Miss Beth Daniel, who had also won the 1975 Championship. Mrs. Ian Robertson, of Glasgow, Scotland, was the medalist with an even-par 72, but lost her first-round match.

The qualifying round reduced the starting field of 154 players to 64 for match play. Twelve players had to compete for the final qualifying places in a playoff that was delayed until the following morning because of darkness.

From the quarter-final round on, Mrs. Sherk defeated three members of the 1978 U.S. Curtis Cup Team to win the Championship-Pat Cornett, Cynthia Hill, and finally Mrs. Oliver. Miss Hill, the 1974 Women's Amateur Champion, gave Mrs. Sherk her closest match, taking her to the final hole. Mrs. Sherk, 1 up going to the 18th hole, overshot the green with her approach.

She played a delicate pitch from the rough at the back of the green, then holed a short par putt to preserve the victory. Miss Hill had eliminated Miss Daniel the previous day, 1 up, in a quarter-final match. Mrs. Oliver also had a scare in her semi-final match with Miss Mary Hafeman. She needed a five-foot birdie putt on the first extra hole to win. When she holed the putt, it was the first time she had been ahead all day.

In the final match, Mrs. Sherk birdied the eighth hole of the morning round, which put her ahead to stay. She was 3 up at the lunch break. In the afternoon, she increased her lead to 4 up after 24 holes. Mrs. Oliver cut the lead in half by winning the next two holes.

Mrs. Sherk countered by winning three of the next four holes for a five-hole lead, the largest of the match. She closed out the match with a par 3 on the 15th hole, the 33rd hole of the match.

Three other former Champions-Mrs. Mark A. Porter (1949), Miss Mary Budke (1972), and Miss Carol Semple (1973)-also qualified for match play. Mrs. Porter and Miss Semple lost in the second round.

Miss Budke lost her first round match. A first-round match between Miss Denise Hermida and Mrs. Carole Caldwell, of the British Curtis Cup Team, went nine extra holes before Miss Hermida won with a birdie.

The match tied the Women's Amateur record for most extra holes, set in the 1950 Championship when Miss Mae Murray defeated Miss Fay Crock in the fourth round. The Championship received a record 207 entries, exceeding the previous high of 201 in 1939.

Championship Facts

U.S. Women's Amateur

HISTORY: The U.S. Women’s Amateur is one of the United States Golf Association’s original three championships. It was first conducted in 1895, shortly after the inaugural U.S. Amateur and U.S. Open. The Women’s Amateur has since been conducted every year except 1917-18, when it was temporarily suspended because of World War I, and 1942-45, when it was suspended because of World War II.

PAR & YARDAGE: Yardage for the Eugene Country Club will be set at 6,484 (stroke play) / 6,516 (match play) yards, par 72.

ARCHITECT: Opened in 1926, the course was designed by H. Chandler Egan. In 1967, Robert Trent Jones Sr. reversed the routing of the original Egan design (i.e., No. 18 tee essentially became the first tee, etc.).

Fairways – Cut to ˝ inch
Tees and collars of greens – Cut to 3/8 inch
Putting greens – Prepared to be firm and fast to measure approximately 11 to 11 1/2 feet on the USGA Stimpmeter
Intermediate rough – Cut to 1 ˝ inches, approximately 6 feet wide along fairways
Primary rough – Cut to 2 ˝ to 3 inches
Player courtesy walks – Cut to 1 ˝ inches, approximately 6 feet wide
The championship setup results in a USGA Course Rating™ of 78.1 and a Slope Rating® of 144

FORMAT: The Women’s Amateur is conducted with 36 holes of stroke-play qualifying. The low 64 scorers then advance to match play, with the champion determined by a 36-hole match-play final.

WHO CAN ENTER: The championship is open to female amateurs who have USGA handicap indexes not exceeding 5.4.

ENTRIES: Entries for the 2008 U.S. Women’s Amateur closed on June 18. There were 960 entries received for the 2008 championship, just shy of the record 969 entries received for the 2006 U.S. Women’s Amateur.



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