McVeigh A Shining Beacon For GB&I

Elder Stateswoman Of Team Produces 2.5 Points In Curtis Cup Loss To USA


Playing with a heavy heart this week, 22-year-old Irishwoman Danielle McVeigh produced 2.5 points for Great Britain and Ireland in its Curtis Cup defeat to the USA at Essex County Club. (John Mummert/USGA)
By Dave Shedloski
June 13, 2010

Manchester-by-the-Sea, Mass. – While Jennifer Song ended her amateur career on Sunday at the Curtis Cup with a loss in singles and already was looking forward to future LPGA Tour fortunes, the woman who vanquished her, Danielle McVeigh of Ireland, was pondering a more modest conquest.

“I’m just thinking about getting dinner right now,” the lanky leader of the Great Britain and Ireland squad said Sunday when asked about her plans beyond this weekend.

If that sounded like she was avoiding the answer, she was not. McVeigh was simply being her father’s daughter, and he would have approved of the response.

Thomas McVeigh didn’t have the chance to attend the 2010 Curtis Cup Match at Essex County Club, but he was very much here in spirit. Before he passed away last month from cancer at the age of 53, he imparted enough wisdom and golfing know-how to his daughter that helped make her the shining light amid the gloom of the GB&I team’s seventh consecutive setback in this biennial competition.

Danielle’s 3-and-2 singles victory over Song, the reigning U.S. Women’s Amateur and U.S. Women’s Amateur Public Links champion, on a chilly and foggy New England day, gave her 2½ of the 7½ points the visitors managed against a heavily favored and more seasoned USA team.

McVeigh accomplished the task for which she was charged – to get the GB&I team out front early and see if she could build any momentum and stop the USA onslaught from the day prior.

That McKenna would have chosen McVeigh to venture out first was hardly surprising given what she’s said just about the 22-year-old prior the competition: “Danielle is in a class of her own. She will lead my team. At 22, she's the oldest player but she's also a great character.”

Possessing a cherubic face that belies her toughness as a golfer, the 6-foot-1 McVeigh took control against Song with an eagle at the par-5 fifth hole after ripping a 5-iron to 20 feet and converting. At the long par-4 eighth she showed she was not going away, sinking a 60-foot putt.

Song didn’t win a hole until the 11th, when McVeigh bogeyed, but the Irishwoman, who honed her game at famed Royal County Down (site of 2008 Walker Cup Match), never offered any further breathing room.

“She’s a good player. She knows the game and what she wants to do on the golf course,” said McVeigh’s caddie for the week, Tom Meaney, a south Boston native who for the last 11 years has caddied at The Country Club in nearby Brookline. “Whatever she chooses to do in the game, I think she’s going to do well because she doesn’t lean on anyone else when she’s playing.”

Self-reliance and patience on the course she also learned from her father. She recalled a time when he caddied for her in a junior match, and she asked him where she stood. “He just told me, ‘I’ll tell you where you are when you need to know.’ I won the next hole, and my opponent came over to shake my hand. That’s when he said, ‘Now you need to know.’ He wanted me to focus on my golf; he wouldn’t let me think too far ahead.”

And she won’t do it now, either. McVeigh, who played two seasons at Texas A&M University, has one year remaining at the National University of Ireland, where she is studying business and management. Her goal is simply to finish school.

“I’m in no hurry to decide,” she said. “Right now, I don’t need to close any door or open any new ones.”

All she wanted was a good meal and a few hours of enjoyment with her teammates before heading back to Ireland. Her mom, Lucy, and one of her five siblings, sister Shauna, made the trip this week with Danielle, and they were there to hug her on the 16th green when she closed out Song.

Her dad was there, too. She was sure of it.

“He would have been in tears here, he’d have enjoyed it so much,” McVeigh said. “But, you know, I could feel him out there with me, all the way to the end.”

Dave Shedloski is a freelance writer whose work has previously appeared on USGA websites.

Follow the USGA
Become a Facebook Fan of the USGAFollow us on Twitter @USGA
THE RULES OF GOLF APP
Get The Rules of Golf App For Your iPhone Or Android Today
World Amateur Golf Ranking
WAGR Counting Event
Partner Links
AmEx image
AmEx image
AmEx image
AmEx image
Chevron
   

The USGA and Chevron have committed to using the game of golf to encourage students in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) disciplines. This commitment has led to the creation of extensive golf-focused STEM teaching tools, and has resulted in charitable contributions to support golf-related programs through Eagles for Education™

At U.S. Open Championships the Chevron STEM ZONE™ is an interactive experience highlighting the science and math behind the game of golf through a variety of hands-on exhibits and experiments.

The partnership has also produced educational materials such as the Science of Golf video series and a nationally-distributed newspaper insert which are provided to teachers as tools to enhance existing curriculum in schools. These lessons teach the science behind the USGA’s equipment testing, handicapping, and agronomy efforts.

For more interactive experiences featuring golf-focused STEM lessons, visit the partnership homepage.

Chevron image
Rolex
   

Rolex has been a longtime supporter of the USGA and salutes the sportsmanship and great traditions unique to the game. This support includes the Rules of Golf where Rolex has partnered with the USGA to ensure golfers understand and appreciate the game.

As the official timekeeper of the USGA and its championships, they also provide clocks throughout host sites for spectator convenience.

For more information on Rolex and their celebration of the game, visit the Rolex and Golf homepage.



Rolex image
IBM
   

IBM has partnered with the USGA to bring the same technology, expertise, and innovation it provides to businesses all over the world to the USGA and golf's national championship.

IBM provides the information technology to develop and host the U.S. Open’s official website, www.usopen.com, as well as the mobile apps and scoring systems for the three U.S. Open championships. These real-time technology solutions provide an enhanced experience for fans following the championship onsite and online.

For more information on IBM and the technology that powers the U.S. Open and businesses worldwide, visit http://www.usopen.com/IBM

AmEx image
Lexus
   

Lexus is committed to partnering with the USGA to deliver a best-in-class experience for the world’s best golfers by providing a fleet of courtesy luxury vehicles for all USGA Championships.

At each U.S. Open, Women’s Open and Senior Open, Lexus provides spectators with access to unique experiences ranging from the opportunity to have a picture taken with both the U.S. Open and U.S. Women’s Open trophies to autograph signings with legendary Lexus Golf Ambassadors in the Lexus Performance Drive Pavilion.

For more information on Lexus, visit http://www.lexus.com/

AmEx image
American Express
   

Together, American Express and the USGA have been providing world-class service to golf fans since 2006. By creating interactive U.S. Open experiences both onsite and online, American Express enhances the USGA’s effort to make the game more accessible and enjoyable for fans.

For more information on American Express visit www.americanexpress.com/entertainment


AmEx image