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Becky Lucidi

Becky Lucidi, 21, of Poway, Calif., who never won a golf event learger than the San Diego City Championship, captured the 102nd United States Women's Amateur Championship at the 6,190-yard, par-71 course at Sleepy Hollow Country Club.

Lucidi, an honorable mention All-American at Southern California in 2002, defeated Brandi Jackson, 21, of Belton, S.C., 3 and 2, in the final match. It was only the fourth time in the last 10 years that two Americans met in the final.

Lucidi said she took a more serious approach to competition after watching the 2002 U.S. Women's Open on television. Following tradition, the reigning champions of the Women's Amateur and Women's Open were paired together in the first two rounds. Lucidi observed that last year's champion, Meredith Duncan, was paired with Karrie Webb, winner of the 2001 Women's Open.

"I was sitting on the couch with my dad. I thought, "That's pretty cool, I'd like to do that next summer,'" said Lucidi. "Juli Inkster (2002 Women's Open Champion) is my favorite player. Just knowing that I get to play with her next year is enough for me."

Lucidi took a 6-up lead after the first 18 holes of the scheduled 36-hole final and seemed well on her way to wrapping up the national championship when the afternoon round began.

Jackson, the 2002 Southern Conference individual champion from Furman, however, bounced back. She won the 19th, 20th, 25th, and 28th holes to pull within a two-hole margin, but that was as close as she would come to overtaking Lucidi.

On the par-3 34th hole, Jackson hit a 7-iron, pushing her shot into the right fringe where it settled 50 feet from the hole. Lucidi then hit her iron shot to within 18 feet of the hole.

With the match on the line, Jackson made a bogey when she failed to get up and down.

"I knew I probably need to make that putt," said Jackson, who was an all-Southern Conference selection. "I just hit it a little too hard. We had trouble reading the greens the last couple of days, for some reason. I'd be pretty good knowing what a putt was going to do, then kind of just lost the feel."

Lucidi, a fifth-year senior-to-be at the University of Southern California, safely two-putted for a par to win the hole and the championship.

Lucidi defeated Lindsey Wright, 22, of Australia, 3 and 1, in the semifinals, Jackson defeated Maru Martinez, 18 of Venezuela, on the 19th hole when she holed a five-foot birdie putt on the first hole played after a weather delay of 1 hour, 54 minutes.

Courtney Swaim, 22, a USA Curtis Cup player from Sugar Hill, Ga., set a record and swept medalist honors. Swaim shot 67-68-135 for 36 holes, seven under par and two strokes better than the record of 137 set by Natalie Gulbis in 1999.

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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