U.S. Women's Mid-Amateur Storylines


The runner-up in the 2013 U.S. Women's Mid-Amateur, three-time Georgia Women's Open champion Margaret Shirley will try and add a USGA championship to her resume when she begins competition at Harbour Trees Golf Club on Sept. 6. (USGA/Darren Carroll)
By USGA
September 3, 2014

The average age of the Women’s Mid-Amateur competitors is 43.11 years old.

The youngest player in the championship is Alisha Matthews, of St. Louis, Mo., who turned 25 on Aug. 2. There are three other players in their first year of championship eligibility: Katelynn Hogenson, of Ames, Iowa; Julia Puscheck, of Pismo Beach, Calif.; and Alyssa Roland, of New York, N.Y.

Taffy Brower, 69, of Boynton Beach, Fla., is the oldest player in the championship.

There are four countries represented at the championship: Argentina, Canada, Mexico and the United States of America.

There are 34 states represented at the championship: Alabama, Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, Washington and Wisconsin.

There are six USGA champions in the field: Mina Hardin, 53, of La Quinta, Calif. (2010 U.S. Senior Women’s Amateur); Martha Leach, 52, of Hebron, Ky. (2009 U.S. Women’s Mid-Amateur); Julia Potter, 26, of Granger, Ind. (2013 U.S. Women’s Mid-Amateur); Anna Schultz, 59, of Rockwall, Texas (2007 U.S. Senior Women’s Amateur); Meghan Stasi, 36, of Oakland Park, Fla. (2006, 2007, 2010, 2012 U.S. Women’s Mid-Amateur); and Corey Weworski, 52, of Carlsbad, Calif. (2004 U.S. Women’s Mid-Amateur).

There are six USGA runners-up in the field: Laura Coble, 50, of Augusta, Ga. (2009 U.S. Women’s Mid-Amateur); Patricia Cornett, 60, of Mill Valley, Calif. (1987 U.S. Women’s Mid-Amateur); Mina Hardin (2001 U.S. Women’s Mid-Amateur; 2011 U.S. Senior Women’s Amateur); Martha Leach (2011 U.S. Women’s Mid-Amateur); Anna Schultz (2000 U.S. Women’s Mid-Amateur; 2006 U.S. Senior Women’s Amateur); and Margaret Shirley, 28, of Atlanta, Ga. (2013 U.S. Women’s Mid-Amateur).

Five players were members of victorious teams in the USGA Women’s State Team Championship: Taffy Brower (Florida, 1999); Laura Coble (Georgia, 2005, 2009, 2011); Leigh Klasse, 54, of St. Anthony, Minn. (2001); Claudia Pilot, 57, of Lake Shore, Minn. (2001); and Lynn Thompson, 56, of Cincinnati, Ohio (2003).

Three players have represented the USA in the Curtis Cup Match: Patricia Cornett (1978, 1988); Noreen Mohler, 60, of Bethlehem, Pa. (1978); and Meghan Stasi (2008). Mohler was captain of the 2010 USA Team, while Cornett served as USA captain in 2012.

Two players have represented their home countries in the Women’s World Amateur Team Championship: Audrey Akins, 47, of Canada (1988); and Maricel Manguinao, 41, of Somerset, N.J. (Philippines, 1996)

Corey Weworski represented the USA in the 2005 Copa de las Americas.

General Player Notes

Debbie Adams, 47, of Asheville, N.C., has represented the United States at the International Maccabiah Games, held every four years in Israel. She is a first-degree black belt in kobudo and a second-degree black belt in karate.

Audrey Akins, 47, of Canada, won the Canadian Junior Girls Championship in 1980 at age 13, making her the youngest winner in championship history. She was a member of the Canadian Team that won a gold medal at the 1986 Commonwealth Games, an Olympic-style competition for countries that were traditionally associated with the former British Empire. Akins is playing in her first USGA championship since the 1983 U.S. Girls’ Junior.

Christie Austin, 57, of Denver, Colo., was a member of the USGA Executive Committee from 2007 to 2012, serving as treasurer in her final year. She was the first woman to chair the Rules of Golf Committee.

Taffy Brower, 69, of Boynton Beach, Fla., once played with legendary players JoAnne Gunderson Carner, Louise Suggs and Marlene Stewart Streit.

Julie Carmichael, 50, of Indianapolis, Ind., is the chief strategy officer of St. Vincent Health. Along with her father, 1961 U.S. Amateur quarterfinalist and former Indiana University golf coach Sam Carmichael, she owns the Martinsville (Ind.) Golf Club. Carmichael won the 1986 NCAA Division I Women’s Golf Championship while attending Stanford University. She was inducted into the Indiana Golf Hall of Fame in 2005 and has won numerous Indiana Golf Association and Indiana Women’s Golf Association championships.

Jane Chin, 27, of Mission Viejo, Calif., in 2009 became the first University of California, Irvine player to earn first-team All-America honors. She received her amateur reinstatement earlier this year, and works as a flight attendant for American Airlines.

Teresa Cleland, 55, of Syracuse, N.Y., has won the last three New York Women’s Mid-Amateur Championships. She has been a teacher in the Syracuse school system for 32 years.

Laura Coble, 50, of Augusta, Ga., is a nine-time winner of the Georgia Women’s Match Play Championship. She is also a six-time Georgia Women’s Amateur champion. Coble was the runner-up to Martha Leach in the 2009 U.S. Women’s Mid-Amateur.

Lisa Cook, 33, of Noblesville, Ind., was runner-up in the 2013 Indiana Women’s Golf Association Mid-Amateur Championship. Her husband, Kenny Cook, is competing in the 2014 U.S. Mid-Amateur Championship, which is being conducted this week at Saucon Valley Country Club in Bethlehem, Pa. Kenny was the runner-up in the 2011 U.S. Mid-Amateur.

Patricia Cornett, 60, of Mill Valley, Calif., runs the educational programs at the University of California, San Francisco. She helped establish a VA Center of Excellence in Primary Care Education at UCSF, one of five programs in the country.

Lynne Cowan, 51, of Rocklin, Calif., is a four-time California Women’s Amateur champion. At age 18, she was diagnosed with ankylosing spondylitis, a form of rheumatoid arthritis, and credits golf with keeping her limber.

Kay Daniel, 43, of Covington, La., won the 2005 Louisiana Women’s Amateur and has won seven Louisiana Women’s Mid-Amateurs, include the last five consecutive events.

Charlotte Daughan, 30, of Orlando, Fla., owns and operates a women’s golf accessory line called Blingo Ball Marks. Numerous professional players use her product, including Michelle Wie and Morgan Pressel. Daughan was runner-up in the 2014 Florida Women’s Amateur Championship, and with her husband, Ben, was runner-up in the 2014 Florida State Golf Association Mixed Team Championship.

Sarah Davison, 34, of Choudrant, La., won the 2013 Louisiana Women’s Amateur, having previously taken the title in 2009. The former University of Alabama standout, who reached the semifinals of the 1997 U.S. Girls’ Junior under her maiden name of Johnston, recently resumed her competitive career, having taken a hiatus following the birth of her twins in 2011.

Stacy Dennis, 41, of Huntsville, Texas, is a two-time Texas Women’s Amateur champion.

Denise Desilet, 59, of Wichita, Kan., has won seven of the last eight Kansas State Senior Women’s Amateur Championships. Desilet, a certified diamontologist, is a past president of the Kansas Women’s Golf Association, and currently serves on the U.S. Women’s Mid-Amateur Championship Committee.

Amy Dickison, 54, of Rowley, Mass., played collegiate ice hockey for Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. She attended the famed USA-Russia hockey game at the 1980 Winter Olympics in Lake Placid, N.Y., and framed the ticket stub.

Lynn Fischer, 52, of Niwot, Colo., was a member of the 1982 Stanford marching band that took to the field as the University of California football team ran back a kickoff for the winning touchdown on the game’s final play. Fischer and her family are avid travelers, and they attended the 2014 World Cup in Brazil and were in the stands for the USA-Belgium match.  

Leslie Folsom, 46, of Tukwila, Wash., is a six-time Washington State Women’s Golf Association Amateur champion.

Joan Garety, 58, of Ada, Mich., has won numerous championships in her home state, and was inducted into the Michigan Golf Hall of Fame in 2006.

Wendi Golden, 39, of Bradenton, Fla., was a semifinalist in the 1995 U.S. Women’s Amateur Championship. She is the executive director of the Greater Sarasota Junior Golf Association.

Mina Hardin, 54, of La Quinta, Calif., was the first Mexican woman to play on the LPGA Tour and the first Mexican-born USGA champion. A reinstated amateur since 1991, she has twice won the Texas Women’s Amateur and was inducted into the Texas Golf Hall of Fame in 2012.

Olivia Herrick, 26, of Roseville, Minn., has won multiple Minnesota State Golf Association and Minnesota Women’s Public Golf Association championships, including the 2009 Women’s Amateur. Herrick is the marketing and communications manager at Mounds Park Academy, where she attended high school, and also serves as coach of the varsity and junior varsity girls golf teams.

Mallory Hetzel, 27, of Waynesville, N.C., is the head women’s golf coach at Western Carolina University. She won the 2014 Carolinas Women’s Match-Play Championship.

Katelynn Hogenson, 25, of Ames, Iowa, is the director of operations and women’s golf for the Iowa Golf Association. She was previously a P.J. Boatwright intern for the association.

Mercedes Huarte, 28, of Argentina, moved to the United States at age 18 to play college golf at Jacksonville State University, where she was a four-time Ohio Valley Conference champion and the 2008 player of the year. She is a financial analyst for Cisco Systems. Her husband, Corey Brindle, is an accountant with the 82nd Airborne Division of the U.S. Army who has served in Afghanistan.

Linda Jeffery, 41, of Abilene, Texas, is an officer in the United States Air Force Reserves. She has competed in events conducted by the Conseil International du Sport Militaire, which organizes sporting events for the armed forces in 133 member countries. She has also competed in the U.S. Armed Forces Golf Championship and the U.S. Air Force Championship.

Andrea Kraus, 53, of Baltimore, Md., won the 2012 Maryland Women’s Amateur, Women’s Mid-Amateur and Senior Women’s Amateur, as well as the 2013 Women’s Mid-Amateur and Senior Women’s Amateur. In 2012 and 2014, she won the Ione D. Jones/Doherty Senior Championship.

Pamela Kuong, 53, of Wellesley Hills, Mass., won the 2008 and 2010 Massachusetts Women’s Amateur Championships. The 2010 championship was conducted at her home course, Charles River Country Club, which served as the companion course for the 2013 U.S. Amateur Championship. She was the 2011 New England Women’s Amateur champion.

Martha Leach, 52, of Hebron, Ky., is the sister of six-time USGA champion Hollis Stacy. Leach introduced her sister at her 2012 World Golf Hall of Fame induction ceremony.

Kareen Markle, 52, of Meridian, Idaho, is a three-time Pacific Northwest Golf Association Women’s Mid-Amateur champion. She has also won multiple Idaho Golf Association titles.

Stefi Markovich, 38, of Canada, won the 2013 Ontario Women’s Mid-Amateur Championship.

Char McLear, 60, of McHenry, Ill., is an assistant fire chief for the Barrington Fire Department. She is also a 42-year veteran of the National Ski Patrol, working in Wisconsin and California.

Anna Morales, 45, of Austin, Texas, is a native of Peru who played on the Peruvian National Team as a junior golfer.

Sue O’Connor, 57, of Scottsdale, Ariz., bicycled across America to raise funds for the American Lung Association. She is a former ski instructor, and once unknowingly gave a lesson to Clint Eastwood.

Katie O’Donnell, 28, of Dallas, Texas, is the manager of women’s competitions for the Texas Golf Association. She was previously a P.J. Boatwright intern for the Women’s Texas Golf Association.

Linda Pearson, 59, of Glendale, Calif., owns Dinah’s Chicken, a restaurant in her hometown. The restaurant has been owned and operated by the Pearson family since 1967.

Brenda Pictor, 59, of Marietta, Ga., won the 1994 and 2014 Georgia Women’s Amateur Championships and is a six-time Georgia Senior Women’s Amateur champion.

Claudia Pilot, 47, of Lake Shore, Minn., is a four-time Minnesota Women’s Mid-Amateur champion and was inducted into the Minnesota Golf Hall of Fame in 2013.

Julia Potter, 26, of Granger, Ind., won the 2007, 2008 and 2014 Indiana Women’s Amateur Championships. She is the director of marketing and women’s golf for the Indiana Golf Office, and was a 2008 P.J. Boatwright Intern for the Missouri Golf Association. Potter was diagnosed with scoliosis as a teenager and underwent the same back surgery as LPGA star Stacy Lewis.

Christina Proteau, 31, of Canada, is a prosecutor for the British Columbia Ministry of Justice. She is a five-time Canadian Women’s Mid-Amateur champion, and has also won four British Columbia Women’s Amateurs and four British Columbia Women’s Mid-Amateurs. Proteau, who is six months pregnant, qualified for the 2011 U.S. Women’s Open at The Broadmoor.

Julia Puscheck, 25, of Pismo Beach, Calif., is a coach with The First Tee of Central Coast, and coaches the girls golf team at San Luis Obispo High School.

Alyssa Roland, 25, of New York, N.Y., won the 2010 Ivy League Championship competing for Yale University. She is a leveraged finance capital markets associate for Credit Suisse.

Lisa Schlesinger, 56, of Laytonsville, Md., won the 2008 and 2009 Maryland Women’s Mid-Amateur Championships. She was the stroke-play medalist in the 2011 and 2012 U.S. Senior Women’s Amateur Championships.

Anna Schultz, 59, of Rockwall, Texas, won the 2013 Texas Women’s Open Senior Championship, as well as numerous other state events. She was one of eight people inducted into the Texas Golf Hall of Fame in 2013, including 1981 U.S. Open champion David Graham and CBS golf and NFL television producer Lance Barrow.

Maureen Sheehan, 56, of Lake Forest, Ill., is the executive director of the Lake Forest Swim Club. Among her students are Olympic gold-medal swimmers Conor Dwyer and Matt Grevers.

Margaret Shirley, 28, of Atlanta, Ga., won the 2006, 2008 and 2013 Georgia Women’s Opens. Shirley was an assistant golf coach at her alma mater, Auburn University, until March 2013, when she became the manager of rules and competition for Atlanta Junior Golf. The organization hosts 90 one-day golf tournaments each summer for youths ages 7-18.

Rachel Smith, 26, of Mansfield, Texas, was a P.J. Boatwright intern with the Women’s Texas Golf Association. She now works in ticket sales for the PGA Tour’s Crowne Plaza Invitational at Colonial.

Suzi Spotleson, 47, of Canton, Ohio, played collegiate softball for Northwestern University and competed in the Women’s College World Series.

Meghan Stasi, 36, of Oakland Park, Fla., won the 2012 Ione D. Jones/Doherty Championship. She and her husband, Danny, own Shuck N’ Dive, a seafood restaurant in Fort Lauderdale.

Helene Thoman, 32, of Sylvania, Ohio, is a former teaching professional at Inverness Club in Toledo, Ohio. The reinstated amateur reached the semifinals of the 2011 U.S. Women’s Mid-Amateur, where she fell to eventual champion Ellen Port.

Courtney Tincher, 28, of New York, N.Y., is a sports consultant for Wasserman Media Group.

Carmen Titus, 27, of Kansas City, Mo., won the 2014 Missouri Women’s Mid-Amateur Championship.

Anita Venner, 59, of Monrovia, Md., has won multiple events in the U.S. Virgin Islands, where she used to reside. One of her fondest golf memories is playing in the Coral Bay Open on the island of Saint John. The unconventional fundraising event is played through the streets and buildings of the island. Animals are used as caddies, while players wear silly outfits and are limited to three or four clubs.

Kristen Wagner, 37, of Atlantic Beach, Fla., works in marketing for the PGA Tour.

Laurie White, 51, of Carmel, N.Y., is a freelance television producer. She has worked at five Olympic Games and on several projects for the USGA. White is a six-time Sports Emmy Award winner.

Kelly Wilson, 40, of Cameron Park, Calif., is a former professional tennis player who qualified for the 1996 US Open. She was inducted into the University of Texas Hall of Honor as a tennis player in 2013, and still holds most records for the Longhorn women’s tennis program.

Dawn Woodard, 38, of Greer, S.C., was the 2012 Carolinas Women’s Player of the Year. She won the 2011 and 2012 Carolinas Women’s Match Play Championships, as well as the 2010-12 Women’s South Carolina Golf Association Match Play Championships and the 2012 WSCGA Stroke Play Championship.

Compiled by Christina Lance, the assistant manager of championship communications for the USGA. Email her at clance@usga.org.

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