Alivia Brown of Gig Harbor, Wash. and Brooke Hamilton of Auckland, New Zealand will meet in the final match tomorrow to determine the champion of the 114th Pacific Northwest Women’s Amateur. In tomorrow’s final match of the 14th Pacific Northwest Women’s Mid-Amateur, Amanda Jacobs of Seattle will attempt to defend her title against No. 1 seed Lani Elston of Milwaukie, Ore.
Tomorrow’s final match in the Women’s Amateur will begin at 7:30 am, and will be contested over 36 holes. The Women’s Mid-Amateur final match will begin at 7:45 am, and will be contested over 18 holes.
The two championships are being held concurrently at BanBury Golf Course in Eagle, Idaho, and are conducted by the Pacific Northwest Golf Association (PNGA).
Brown, a sophomore on the Washington State University women’s golf team who last month had won the Washington State Women’s Amateur, fought her way through a tough bracket to reach the final match. In the opening Round of 32, it took her 20 holes to defeat Gigi Stoll, who had just repeated as the Oregon Women’s Amateur champion. She then went 19 holes in defeating Haley Nist of Meridian, Idaho in the Round of 16. This morning she defeated WSU teammate Bree Wanderscheid in the quarterfinal match. Then in this afternoon’s semifinal match, she was matched up against No. 1 seed Gabrielle Barker of Caldwell, Idaho, who had just won the Idaho State Women’s Amateur. In a back-and-forth match, Barker had tied it with a par on the 17th hole, but when she found the water hazard on the par-5 18th hole, she conceded the hole and the match to Brown, who had a tap-in birdie.
Hamilton, the No. 3 seed, is a 17-year-old phenom from New Zealand, where she has won multiple Order of Merit championships, including the South Island Women’s Stroke Play and the Lochiel Women’s Open, and last month represented New Zealand at the Junior Golf World Cup in Japan. Hamilton was able to scratch out a win in this morning’s quarterfinal match against Carly Oldroyd of Farmington, Utah, outlasting her in 21 holes. She then easily handled
Hannah Kim of Auburn, Wash. in the afternoon semifinal match, 5 and 4.
In the Women’s Mid-Amateur, Elston had earned a bye in her first match because of earning medalist honors and the No. 1 seed. This morning’s quarterfinal match was her first match of the championship, and was able to seal a 4 and 2 win over Catherine Allen of Bellingham, Wash. by taking three consecutive holes on the back nine. In Elston’s semifinal match this afternoon, she quickly found herself 5-down to Kareen Markle after just six holes, but was able to grind her way back into the match and won it 2-up. Markle, of Meridian, Idaho, has won this championship three times (2005, 2007, 2013).
Elston will face Jacobs, who won this championship last year and was named the WSGA Women’s Mid-Amateur Player of the Year. This morning Jacobs had defeated Alison Murdoch of Victoria, B.C., a two-time winner of this championship (2006, 2008) and a member of the Pacific Northwest Golf Hall of Fame.
First held in 1899, the Pacific Northwest Women’s Amateur Championship is one of the oldest amateur golf championships in the world. Past champions include Pacific Northwest Golf Hall of Famers who made up the Golden Age of female golfers in the Northwest such as JoAnne Gunderson Carner, Jo Ann Washam, Pat Lesser Harbottle, Edean Ihlanfeldt, Violet Pooly Sweeney, Marcia Fisher, and Betty Jean Hulteng, among others. Past champions also include many others who would later go on to the LPGA Tour, such as Jimin Kang, Peggy Conley, Ruth Jessen and Shirley Englehorn.
BanBury Golf Course is located just outside of Boise in Eagle, Idaho. The course has a long connection with the PNGA after hosting several PNGA championships, as well as the 2005 U.S. Girls’ Junior Amateur. The course’s architect, John Harbottle III, was the son of Pacific Northwest Golf Hall of Famers, Dr. John and Patricia Harbottle.