U.S. SENIOR WOMEN'S AMATEUR
Starting Times are Set and the Field is Ready
September 22, 2015 | Far Hills, N.J.
By Greg Midland, USGA
The best 50-and-older female amateurs take their turn in the USGA championship spotlight starting on Saturday, Sept. 26, as the U.S. Senior Women’s Amateur gets underway at Hillwood Country Club in Nashville, Tenn. The talented field of 132 descends on the home of country music focused on hitting the right notes in their quest to capture the 54th championship.
Competitors will play 36 holes of stroke play before the field is cut to the low 64, who advance to match play. Here are five notable stroke-play groupings and starting times (all times CDT):
Saturday 1:30 p.m., Hole No. 10; Sunday 8:45 a.m., Hole No. 1: Ellen Port, St. Louis, Mo.; Heidi Person, Pauma Valley, Calif.; Debbie Friede, Washougal, Wash.
In addition to her six career USGA titles, which include two in this championship (2012-13) and four in the U.S. Women’s Mid-Amateur, Port captained the victorious 2014 USA Curtis Cup Team and is the newly installed head women’s golf coach at Washington University in St. Louis. While Port never played professionally, her two fellow competitors are reinstated amateurs. Person, a California native, is making her USGA championship debut after playing on the women’s Asian and European tours in the early 1990s, and Friede competed for six years on the LPGA Tour.
Saturday 12:50 p.m., Hole No. 10; Sunday 8:05 a.m., Hole No. 1: Joan Higgins, Glendora, Calif.; Pam Simpson, Kansas City, Mo.; Therese Quinn, Jacksonville, Fla.
With her victory in this championship last year, Higgins became just the third player to win the U.S. Senior Women’s Amateur and the U.S. Women’s Mid-Amateur (2008). Simpson, who is making her USGA championship debut, took a long layoff from the game while working in the hotel business and only started competing again four years ago. Quinn played in three consecutive U.S. Women’s Opens from 1971-73 and is competing in her ninth U.S. Senior Women’s Am.
Saturday, 8:05 a.m., Hole No. 10; Sunday, 12:50 p.m., Hole No. 1: Leslie Elkins, Roswell, Ga.; Sue Billek Nyhus, Orem, Utah; Tama Caldabaugh, Ponte Vedra Beach, Fla.
By virtue of competing in the inaugural U.S. Women’s Amateur Four-Ball Championship in May, Nyhus completed the feat of playing in every USGA championship for females, seven in all. Caldabaugh is a dominant competitor in northeast Florida, winning five Jacksonville Women’s Golf Association championships, including in 2013, when she was undergoing chemotherapy for ovarian cancer. Elkins, who is playing in her first U.S. Senior Women’s Amateur, has made a hole-in-one playing both left-handed and right-handed.
Saturday 1:30 p.m., Hole No. 1; Sunday 8:45 a.m., Hole No. 10: Mina Hardin, Mexico; Patricia Schremmer, Honolulu, Hawaii; Lynne Cowan, Rocklin, Calif.
Hardin won the 2010 U.S. Senior Women’s Amateur, becoming the first Mexican-born USGA champion more than 20 years after being the first Mexican to play on the LPGA Tour. Schremmer, who turned 50 on Aug. 8, is the youngest player in the field and is making her first USGA championship start since the 1998 U.S. Women’s Open. Cowan has competed in 22 USGA championships and is a four-time California Women’s Amateur champion.
Saturday 12:40 p.m., Hole No. 10; Sunday 7:55 a.m., Hole No. 1: Diane Lang, Weston, Fla.; Linda DiVall, Alexandria, Va.; Josie Trapnell, Tucson, Ariz.
Lang is a three-time champion of the U.S. Senior Women’s Am (2005, 2006 and 2008) and was born and raised in Kingston, Jamaica. DiVall, the president and CEO of presidential polling firm American Viewpoint, is playing in her first U.S. Senior Women’s Amateur since 2003, and also competed in the 1968 U.S. Girls’ Junior. Trapnell, 52, took up the game 10 years ago and is playing in her first USGA championship.
Greg Midland is the director of editorial and multimedia content for the USGA. Email him at email@example.com.