With winds gusting as high as 25 mph across the fairways and greens of the Prospector course at Suncadia in Cle Elum, competitors at the 115th Pacific Northwest Women’s Amateur and 15th Women’s Mid-Amateur struggled as they played their first round of the championship’s stroke-play qualifying.
No players in the stellar field broke par, and any score in the 70s was evidence of tremendous skill in difficult playing conditions.
In the Women’s Amateur, Michelle Kim of Surrey, B.C. and Sierra Kersten of Spokane, Wash. are tied at the top, both shooting rounds of 2-over par 74.
Kersten is a freshman at Stanford and played in the final match at the NCAA Women’s National Championship in May at Eugene (Ore.) Country Club. She was twice named the WSGA Junior Girls Player of the Year (2013 and 2014).
Kim is on the Canadian National Team. She is a sophomore at the University of Idaho, and in 2015 won the BC Women’s Amateur, the BC Junior Girls’ Amateur, and the Canadian Junior Girls’ Amateur.
In the Women’s Mid-Amateur, Amanda Jacobs of Portland, Ore. shot an impressive 1-over par 73 to lead the field. Jacobs won this championship in 2014, and in 2015 was named the PNGA Women’s Mid-Amateur Player of the Year.
The second round of qualifying will take place Wednesday, July 20, after which the field for the Women’s Amateur will be cut to the low 32 scores, who will then advance to the championship’s single-elimination match-play bracket. All matches will be played over 18 holes, with the exception of the final match, which will be played over 36 holes on July 23.
The final match for the Women’s Mid-Amateur will be contested over 18 holes, also on July 23.