Week of May 1st Tee Times

McEvoy Grabs Lead at 51st Women’s Amateur

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Defending champion Catherine McEvoy of Innis Arden Golf Club shot a remarkable score of four under-par 69 to take a commanding lead after day two of the 51st Connecticut State Women’s Amateur. The state’s most prestigious women’s amateur championship is being contested over 54-holes of stroke play at the 5,593 yard, par-73 layout at Heritage Village Country Club in Southbury, Conn.

After an opening round of 78 that left her five strokes behind the leader, McEvoy wasted no time making a charge up the leaderboard on day two. Her front nine of three birdies and zero bogies was nearly flawless, and with the leaders struggling to keep pace, she quickly vaulted from a tie for fifth place to leading the tournament.

“I had three birdies on the front nine and didn’t make any mistakes, which was a good momentum booster going into the back nine,” said McEvoy. “I felt pretty confident after that start and just tried to keep plugging along on the back nine. I made a bad bogey on the 16th hole, but I was able to finish strong by getting up-and-down on #17 for par and I hit it close on #18 for a birdie.”

McEvoy, who captured the Women’s Amateur at Indian Hill Country Club in 2015, began her quest for the trophy in similar fashion. Last year, she also opened with a round of 78, but waited until the final round to make her move. She shot 76-73 in the final two rounds to edge Jen Holland by a single stroke. However, Wednesday will have a much different feel for McEvoy, who holds a six stroke lead and will be the one the rest of the field is chasing.

“I feel like I’m hitting the ball really solid and only had 26 putts for my round, so I think if I can hit the ball as well as I did today and make a few putts, I’ll be in good shape.”

The Women’s Amateur marks the last amateur tournament of the summer for McEvoy, who will beginning her freshman year at Michigan State University in just a few weeks. She will be competing on their Division I collegiate golf team, which finished the season ranked #45 in the nation.

A win on Wednesday by McEvoy would also mark the first time in history that the Connecticut Women’s Amateur and Women’s Open champions have hailed from the same club. Earlier this spring, Jessica Carafiello of Innis Arden Golf Club captured the Women’s Open title, an event where McEvoy finished in a tie for 8th place and captured low amateur honors.

McEvoy is seeking to become just the tenth player in tournament to successfully defend their title. Kelly Whaley of TPC River Highlands was the last player to accomplish that feat, winning in 2013 at Rockledge Golf Club and 2014 at The Farms Country Club.

Although overnight leader Ellen Nighbor struggled to a round of seven over-par on Tuesday, she stands just six strokes back of McEvoy and well within striking distance. The reigning NEC Conference Player of the Year who is a rising senior at Sacred Heart University grabbed the first round lead with a round of 73 that included four birdies. 

Maisie Filler, the 2015 CWGA Junior Champion, and Nikki Liucci, runner-up at the 97th CWGA Championship, both equaled their day one scores, shooting consecutive rounds of 77 for a total of 154 (+8). MacKenzie Hawkes, the reigning CWGA Champion, shot a second round score of 79 and sits in fifth place at 155 (+9). 

The final round begins at 7:30 a.m. off both #1 and #10 tees, with the leaders beginning play at 8:40 a.m. Nine-hole scoring for all groups and hole-by-hole scoring for the leaders will be available online at CTWomensAmateur.com.


Division Leaders

Overall Division

Catherine McEvoy, Innis Arden Golf Club – 78-69—147 (+1)

Junior Division (17 and Under)

Maisie Filler, Hartford Golf Club – 77-77—154 (+8)

Senior Division (50-59 years of age)

Jen Holland, Southern New England Women’s Golf Assoc. – 82-77–159 (+13)

Super-Senior Division (60+ years of age)

Darlene Tranquilli, Orange Hills Country Club – 78-86–164 (+18)