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Ziegler Medals in Qualifying at 113th Pacific Northwest Women’s Amateur, Stone in 13th Women’s Mid-Amateur; Match Play Begins Tomorrow

Aaren Ziegler of Canby, Ore. followed up yesterday’s round of 1-under par 71 with a 1-over 73 in today’s second round of stroke play to claim medalist honors in qualifying into the match play portion of the 113th Pacific Northwest Women’s Amateur; while Brie Stone of Veneta, Ore. earned medalist honors in the 13th Women’s Mid-Amateur.

Women's Amateur medalist Aaren Ziegler
Women’s Amateur medalist Aaren Ziegler

Both championships are being held concurrently at Lewiston (Idaho) Golf & Country Club, and are being conducted by the Pacific Northwest Golf Association (PNGA).

Ziegler, who won this championship in 2011 and will be a senior in the fall playing for the University of Wisconsin, began the day tied for the lead with Tyler Barker of Caldwell, Idaho. Barker finished second, two strokes behind Ziegler.

The field has been cut to the low 32 scores, with these players now advancing to single elimination match play.

Other strong contenders who have qualified for match play are defending champion Jennifer Ha of Calgary, Alta. Ha just finished her junior year at Kent State University, where she was the 2013 Mid-American Conference Golfer of the Year. She is a member of the Canadian National Team. Also advancing are Jordan Ferreira of University Place, Wash. who won the 2012 PNGA Junior Girls’ Amateur and was named the 2012 WSGA Junior Girls’ Player of the Year, and who two weeks ago won the Washington Women’s State Amateur; Cali Hipp of Caldwell, Idaho, the 2008 Idaho Women’s State Amateur champion who just finished her junior year at the University of Oregon; and Kendall Gray of Federal Way, Wash., the reigning Pacific Northwest Junior Girls’ Amateur champion who has qualified for the 2014 U.S. Women’s Amateur Public Links Championship to be held July 14-19, the second year in a row she has qualified for that championship.

First held in 1899, 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, Betty Jean Hulteng, among others. Past champions also include many who would later go on to the LPGA Tour, such as Jimin Kang, Peggy Conley, Ruth Jessen and Shirley Englehorn.

Brie Stone
Women’s Mid-Amateur medalist Brie Stone

In the Women’s Mid-Amateur Championship, Stone had rounds of 73-74 and finished six strokes clear of second-place finisher in the qualifying rounds.

The championship flight of the Women’s Mid-Amateur will consist of the top 16 scores. All matches will be played as single-elimination.

Kareen Markle of Meridian, Idaho has returned to try to defend her title, and by finishing fourth in the stroke play qualifying she is on her way. Markle is coming off a remarkable 2013 in which she also won the IGA Women’s Match Play and the IGA Women’s Mid-Amateur and qualified for both the U.S. Senior Women’s Amateur and the U.S. Women’s Mid-Amateur championships. She was named the 2013 PNGA Senior Women’s Co-Player of the Year. Markle has won this championship three times (also winning it in 2005 and 2007).

Lisa Smego of Olympia, Wash., the reigning PNGA Senior Women’s Co-Player of the Year, withdrew after the first round of qualifying with a sore back.

The round of the day was from Amanda Jacobs of Seattle, who stumbled to an 82 yesterday but came back strong today with a 1-over par 73. Jacobs finished runner-up in last year’s championship, losing the final match 1-up to Markle.