Lisa Schlesinger and Ellen Port Advance To Quarterfinals At USGA Senior Women’s Amateur


Lisa Schlesinger, the medalist in stroke play for the second consecutive year, posted a 2-and-1 victory over Anna Schultz in the third round of match play. (Fred Vuich/USGA)
By Brian DePasquale, USGA
September 11, 2012

Hershey, Pa. – Lisa Schlesinger, 54, of Laytonsville, Md., and Ellen Port, 50, of St. Louis, Mo., the top seeds in each half of the bracket, both won two matches Tuesday to advance to the quarterfinal round at the 2012 USGA Senior Women’s Amateur Championship at the par-74, 6,220-yard Hershey Country Club West Course.

Schlesinger, the medalist in stroke play for the second consecutive year, won a third-round duel with Anna Schultz, of Rockwall, Texas, 2 and 1. The pair traded birdies on the inward nine and the match was all square after 15 holes. Schlesinger made a 7-foot par putt on the par-5 16th to go ahead of the 2007 Senior Women’s Amateur champion. She clinched the match on the par-3 17th by hitting a 7-iron to the right of the hole and sinking an 18-foot birdie.

No. 17 is the same hole where Schultz had clinched her second-round victory earlier in the day over Corey Weworski with a dramatic hole-in-one. Schlesinger defeated Mary Jane Hiestand, 2 and 1, earlier in the day.

“My goal is to get back to the semifinals,” Schlesinger said. “I belong here and I want the opportunity. All these people are so good. Every time you win a match, it’s like wow.”

The 2012 USGA Senior Women’s Amateur Championship consists of 36 holes of stroke play followed by six rounds of match play. The quarterfinal and semifinal rounds will be played Wednesday. The championship concludes with an 18-hole final on Thursday, starting at 8:30 a.m. EDT.

The USGA Senior Women’s Amateur is one of 13 national championships conducted annually by the United States Golf Association, 10 of which are strictly for amateurs.

Port, who is playing in her first Senior Women’s Amateur, has dominated each opponent right from the start. She captured four of the first six holes, including winning Nos. 1 and 3 with birdies, and registered a 6-and-5 decision over Susan Rheney, of Greensboro, Ga. In the second round, Port, a four-time U.S. Women’s Mid-Amateur champion, played the opening eight holes in one under par to build a big lead en route to dispatching Therese Quinn, of Jacksonville, Fla., 6 and 5.

“I’ve been fortunate to get off to a good start in every match,” Port said. “Those par 5s are reachable for me. I just have to be careful not to get too far ahead of myself. The course is drying out, so the ball is running further. But the angles are tricky. If you’re not careful the ball can run into the rough.”

Carolyn Creekmore, 60, of Dallas, will meet Port in the quarterfinals. The only past Senior Women’s Amateur champion remaining in the field advanced with a 2-and-1 triumph over Leigh Klasse, of St. Anthony, Minn. Creekmore, who won her title in 2004, also recorded a 3-and-2 decision against Alexandra Frazier, of West Conshohocken, Pa., in the second round.

“I started well, but we both got in a slump in the middle holes,” said Creekmore about her third-round match. “At the turn I told myself, ‘You may lose, but play golf on the back. Just play.’ And I was even par on the back.”

Jane Fitzgerald, 50, of Kensington, Md., survived a back-and-forth match with 67-year-old Taffy Brower, of Boynton Beach, Fla. Fitzgerald made a 9-foot birdie putt on the 19th hole to reach the quarterfinal round. She stayed alive in the match with a conceded birdie on the par-3 17th and by making a nearly 5-foot bogey putt to halve the 18th.

“We certainly gave each other a couple of holes,” said Fitzgerald, who is playing in her first Senior Women’s Amateur. “I am so excited to keep going. Making that putt (on 18) was really exciting.”

Joan Higgins, 56, of Glendora, Calif., will face Fitzgerald in the quarterfinals after winning a pair of 19-hole matches. The 2008 Women’s Mid-Amateur champion defeated Marianne Towersey, of Pebble Beach, Calif., in the third round and Marilyn Hardy, of Houston, Texas, earlier in the day.

Brenda Pictor, 57, of Marietta, Ga., has made it one step farther than last year when she reached the third round. Pictor defeated Laura Algiero, of White Plains, N.Y., 4 and 3, to get to the quarterfinals.

Participating in her second Senior Women’s Amateur, Julie Harrison, 52, of Baton Rouge, La., eliminated Robyn Puckett of Australia, 2 and 1, in the third round. Puckett was a finalist in 2007. Harrison, whose husband is the former men’s golf coach at Louisiana State University, also posted a 2-up win over Sandra Woodruff, of Santa Cruz, Calif., in the previous round.

Lecia Alexander, 54, of Stafford, Texas, will tangle with Harrison in the quarterfinals after defeating 1989 U.S. Women’s Mid-Amateur champion Robin W. Donnelley, 5 and 4. Alexander, a former Houston City Amateur winner, also upended Kim Eaton, a two-time Senior Women’s Amateur quarterfinalist from Tempe, Ariz., in the second round.

Hershey, Pa. – Results of Tuesday’s second round of match play at the 2012 USGA Senior Women’s Amateur Championship, played at the 6,220-yard, par-74 Hershey Country Club (West Course)

Round of 32

(Upper Bracket)

Lisa Schlesinger, Laytonsville, Md. (149) def. Mary Jane Hiestand, Naples, Fla. (161), 2 and 1

Anna Schultz, Rockwall, Texas (158) def. Corey Weworski, Carlsbad, Calif. (158), 3 and 1

Brenda Pictor, Marietta, Ga. (155) def. Mina Hardin, Mexico (159), 6 and 5

Laura Algiero, White Plains, N.Y. (162) def. Noreen Mohler, Bethlehem, Pa. (155), 2 up

Marianne Towersey, Pebble Beach, Calif. (162) def. Martha Leach, Hebron, Ky. (153), 3 and 2

Joan Higgins, Glendora, Calif. (158) def. Marilyn Hardy, Houston, Texas (156), 19 holes

Taffy Brower, Boynton Beach, Fla. (153) def. Barbara Pagana, Selinsgrove, Pa. (162), 4 and 2

Jane Fitzgerald, Kensington, Md. (162) def. Frances Gacos, Flemington, N.J. (164), 2 and 1

(Lower Bracket)

Ellen Port, St. Louis, Mo. (150) def. Therese Quinn, Jacksonville, Fla. (161), 6 and 5

Susan Rheney, Greensboro, Ga. (163) def. Claudia Pilot, Austin, Minn. (157), 1 up

Leigh Klasse, St. Anthony, Minn. (159) def. Andrea Kraus, Baltimore, Md. (154), 4 and 3

Carolyn Creekmore, Dallas, Texas (164) def. Alexandra Frazier, West Conshohocken, Pa. (159), 3 and 2

Robin W. Donnelley, Palm Beach, Fla. (161) def. Lynda Case, Fort Myers, Fla. (165), 6 and 4

Lecia Alexander, Stafford, Texas (164) def. Kim Eaton, Tempe, Ariz. (158), 5 and 3

Robyn Puckett, Australia (162) def. Rachel Moreaux, San Rafael, Calif. (154), 19 holes

Julie Harrison, Baton Rouge, La. (164) vs. Sandra Woodruff, Santa Cruz, Calif. (162), 2 up

Hershey, Pa. – Results of Tuesday’s third round of match play at the 2012 USGA Senior Women’s Amateur Championship, played at the 6,220-yard, par-74 Hershey Country Club (West Course)

Round of 16

(Upper Bracket)

Lisa Schlesinger, Laytonsville, Md. (149) def. Anna Schultz, Rockwall, Texas (158), 2 and 1

Brenda Pictor, Marietta, Ga. (155) def. Laura Algiero, White Plains, N.Y. (162), 4 and 3

Joan Higgins, Glendora, Calif. (158) def. Marianne Towersey, Pebble Beach, Calif. (162), 19 holes

Jane Fitzgerald, Kensington, Md. (162) def. Taffy Brower, Boynton Beach, Fla. (153), 19 holes

(Lower Bracket)

Ellen Port, St. Louis, Mo. (150) def. Susan Rheney, Greensboro, Ga. (163), 6 and 5

Carolyn Creekmore, Dallas, Texas (164) def. Leigh Klasse, St. Anthony, Minn. (159), 2 and 1

Lecia Alexander, Stafford, Texas (164) def. Robin W. Donnelley, Palm Beach, Fla. (161), 5 and 4

Julie Harrison, Baton Rouge, La. (164) def. Robyn Puckett, Australia (162), 2 and 1

Hershey, Pa. – Pairings for Wednesday’s quarterfinal round of match play at the 2012 USGA Senior Women’s Amateur Championship, played at the 6,220-yard, par-74 Hershey Country Club (West Course)

Quarterfinal Pairings

(Upper Bracket)

8:00 a.m. - Lisa Schlesinger, Laytonsville, Md. (149) vs. Brenda Pictor, Marietta, Ga. (155)

8:10 a.m. - Joan Higgins, Glendora, Calif. (158) vs. Jane Fitzgerald, Kensington, Md. (162)

(Lower Bracket)

8:20 a.m. - Ellen Port, St. Louis, Mo. (150) vs. Carolyn Creekmore, Dallas, Texas (164)

8:30 a.m. - Lecia Alexander, Stafford, Texas (164) vs. Julie Harrison, Baton Rouge, La. (164)

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