The Club at Olde Stone, in Bowling Green, Ky., has been chosen by the United States Golf Association as the host site for the 2022 U.S. Girls’ Junior Championship. Scheduled for July 18-23, the 74th U.S. Girls’ Junior will be the club’s first USGA championship.
“We’re so thankful to The Club at Olde Stone for its upcoming partnership, and excited to be able to bring the best junior amateurs in the world to this fantastic golf course,” said Tracy Parsons, championship director for the USGA. “The U.S. Girls’ Junior is not only steeped in history but is also the USGA’s fastest growing championship, serving the fastest growing demographic in golf. We look forward to continuing its tradition in Bowling Green.”
Olde Stone was designed by Arthur Hills and opened in 2006. The course, which features zeonzoysia fairways and bent grass greens with elevation changes of over 150 feet, has hosted a number of prestigious events, including the Junior Ryder Cup, NCAA Division I Regionals, the Southern Amateur, the Southern Junior Amateur and the Kentucky Open.
“The club and our membership are ecstatic to welcome the U.S. Girls’ Junior Championship to Olde Stone, and to be able to showcase such a special and challenging golf course,” said Kevin Childers, the club’s director of golf. “To have our first USGA championship be the U.S. Girls’ Junior, an event that encapsulates so much of the joy, growth and competitive nature of the game, is extra special to all of us here at Olde Stone. We look forward to what’s to come.”
First conducted in 1949, the U.S. Girls’ Junior Championship is open to female amateurs who have not turned 19 on or before the final day of the championship and have a Handicap Index® not exceeding 9.4. Notable champions include three-time winner Hollis Stacy, two-time winner Nancy Lopez, Mickey Wright, JoAnne Gunderson Carner, Amy Alcott, Pat Hurst, I.K. Kim, Inbee Park, Lexi Thompson and Ariya Jutanugarn. Starting in 2017, Girls’ Junior champions earn an exemption into the following year’s U.S. Women’s Open Championship. The USGA accepted a record 1,606 entries for the championship in 2018 and 1,559 entries in 2019.
The 2022 U.S. Girls’ Junior Championship will be the sixth USGA championship contested in Kentucky, and the first since the 2007 U.S. Women’s Amateur Public Links Championship was held at Kearney Hill Golf Links in Lexington. This will be the first U.S. Girls’ Junior in the Bluegrass State.
The U.S. Girls’ Junior consists of a field of 156 players competing in 36 holes of stroke play over two days. The field is reduced to the low 64 scores for the championship’s match-play bracket, with all matches contested at 18 holes until the 36-hole final.
In 2020, the 72nd U.S. Girls’ Junior will be conducted July 13-18 at the U.S. Air Force Academy’s Eisenhower Golf Course in Colorado Springs, Colo.; the 2021 championship will be conducted at Columbia Country Club in Chevy Chase, Md. In 2019, Lei Ye, 18, an incoming freshman at Stanford University, became the first player from the People's Republic of China to win the U.S. Girls' Junior with a 1-up victory over 17-year-old Floridian Jillian Bourdage at SentryWorld in Stevens Point, Wis.