Amateur/Mid-Amateur at Lockwood Folly

Registration is now open for the 2019 Women’s Southern Golf Association Amateur and Mid-Amateur Championships with some exciting extras promising a great week for competitors and officials.

The WSGA is pleased to announce that two-time WSGA Champion and 2018 winning Curtis Cup Captain Virginia Derby-Grimes will be the guest speaker at the Welcome Party the evening of the practice round.

The host  club for the event June 3-7 will be Lockwood Folly in Holden Beach, NC. Tournament organizers have made arrangements for players, guests and WSGA board members to be invited to the East Coast Shrimp-a-roo and Barbeque Dinner sponsored by the Town of Holden Beach on Tuesday, June 4.

This event will be held at the River Room and Terrace and kicks off with cocktails (cash bar) at 6:30. Dinner will follow and guests will be entertained by a live beach music band. Attire for the event will be casual.

“We would like to say a big thank you to WSGA Chairman Myrna Robinson and Local Club Chairman Gayle Todd for their efforts in getting our tournament players and officials invited as a part of this year’s event in Holden Beach. This party should be a great diversion for the players following their first day of match play,” said WSGA President Janie Carpenter.

Sunday night’s guest speaker Derby-Grimes won her WSGA titles in 1987 and 1996. She was also runner-up 4 times and has the distinction of losing in the finals to two former champions who went on to be LPGA major winners. These were Lexie Thompson, who defeated Derby-Grimes in 2009, and Stacy Lewis, who won the title in 2007.

In addition to being the winning Curtis Cup captain last June, Virginia competed for the USA on the Curtis Cup team in 1998, 2000 and 2006. She played her college golf at Auburn and went on to coach the golf team at her alma mater from 1991-1994. She was inducted into Auburn’s Tiger Trail, which honors outstanding athletes, coaches and administrators, in 2004.

Derby-Grimes won the USGA Mid-Amateur Championship in 1998 and was runner-up in 2004. She won medalist honors in the USGA Women’s Amateur Championship in 1995 and 1997. She was a member of Alabama’s winning team in the USGA Women’s State Team Championship in 1997.

Listing Derby-Grimes’ accomplishments at the state and local  level would be impossible but she has won 5 Alabama Amateur Championships and 3 Mississippi titles. She was inducted into the Alabama Sports Hall of Fame in 2004.

The WSGA is honored to have Derby-Grimes as a part of their 104th Amateur Championship and 5th Mid- Amateur Championship. “I am so excited that Virginia has agreed to come speak to us at our Welcome Party,” said Host Chairman Robinson, who was instrumental in getting the former champion to come.

Lockwood Folly members and staff are working tirelessly to ensure that this year’s  championships  are among the best ever.


WSGA Champions

Another name will be added to the storied history of the WSGA Amateur Championship when the tournament is contested June 3-7 at Lockwood Folly Golf Course in Holden Beach, NC

A look back at some recent Southern champions takes us from LPGA major winners…to collegiate stars…to up and coming junior girls looking to make their mark on women’s golf.

The biggest names on the Southern Championship trophy are 2-time LPGA major winner Stacy Lewis, who won Southern in 2007, and major champion Lexie Thompson, who claimed the title in 2009 when she was just 14-years-old.

Lewis won her title at River Chase Country Club in Birmingham, AL while she was a student-athlete at the University of Arkansas. Lewis has 14 professional wins and was LPGA Player of the Year in both 2012 and 2014. She has represented the USA on the Solheim Cup team 4 times.

Thompson, who turned pro at 15, has collected 13 LPGA wins and played on 3 Solheim Cup teams. Thompson captured her WSGA title at Stonewood Golf and Country Club in Albany, GA

The defending WSGA Amateur Champion is Calynne Roshult of Cedar Park, TX, who won her title last summer as a 15-year-old. Roshult opened play with an impressive qualifying round of 66 to win medalist honors and cruise on to her title. The 2018 event was played at NorthRiver Yacht Club in Tuscaloosa, AL

Also winning Southern as a young teenager was Sierra Brooks of Sorrento, FL. Brooks won the 100th WSGA Amateur Championship held at Sara Bay Country Club in Sarasota, FL in 2015. Brooks was also just 15 when she won her title, the last time the championship was decided by a 36-hole final.

Brooks started her collegiate career at Wake Forest and transferred to the University of Florida, where she was an honorable mention All-American in 2018. She represented the USA in the Curtis Cup in 2016.

Stanford University player Mika Liu was another WSGA teenage winner when she captured the WSGA Amateur in 2014 at the age of 15. That same year Liu also won The Western and the World Junior Girls Championship. She was a part of the winning team in the inaugural USGA Four-Ball Championship in 2015 and played on the Curtis Cup team in 2016.

SMU collegiate standout Lindsay McCurdy of Liberty Hill, TX captured the WSGA Amateur title at Hot Springs Village, AR in 2017. McCurdy just completed her rookie year on the Symetra Tour and is looking for great things on that tour starting this spring.

The 2013 WSGA winner was Hally Leadbetter of Bradenton, FL, daughter of famed golf instructor David Leadbetter. Hally won her title at Turtle Point Yacht and Country Club in Killen, TX while a student at the University of Arkansas. She later went on to have a stellar collegiate career at Rollins College. Leadbetter is currently the Social Media Coordinator for Golf Digest.

As you can see many teenagers have used their win at the Southern Amateur Championship to springboard them to outstanding collegiate and professional careers. Save the date for this year’s event…entries will open in mid-March and be available on this website.


2019 WSGA Amateur/Mid Amateur Championships

Top Amateur golfers from throughout the South will be at Lockwood Folly Country Club in Holden Beach, NC June 3-7 for the Women’s Golf Association Amateur and Mid Amateur Championships.

Among the players who have won the coveted Southern Amateur are current LWGA major winners Lexi Thompson and Stacy Lewis. Collegiate standouts Mika Liu (Stanford), Alex Wright (Ohio State) and Sierra Brooks (Florida) are also recent winners of the title. Assistant editor at Golf Digest Haly Leadbetter is also a former Southern Champion.

“The picturesque Lockwood Folly golf course will be an awesome setting for our championships in June,” said WSGA President Janie Carpenter. “We are expecting a stellar group of competitors in each tournament, including some of the top collegiate and junior players in the South.”

Lockwood Folly features tree-lined fairways with massive oaks, stately pines and abundant wildlife. The course was designed by Willard Byrd and built in 1988 on a former hunting preserve.

The course features narrow holes with shot-making at a premium. Water hazards come in to play on 15 holes. The #18 signature hole is a par-5 slight dogleg with water coming into play twice. The oceans behind this green so most days you are playing it directly into the wind. The course is so close to the Atlantic Ocean golfers can hear the roar of the surf throughout their round.

Holden Beach is located on the Carolina coast midway between Myrtle Beach, SC and Wilmington, NC.

Both the Amateur and Mid Amateur Championships will get underway with a qualifying round on Monday, June 3. Match play starts June 4 with the champions to be determined in the title matches Friday, June 7.

Defending Amateur Champion is 16-year-old Calynne Roshult of Cedar Park, TX Defending Mid Amateur Champion is Susan West of Tuscaloosa, AL.

Keep an eye out for more tournament information as it becomes available in the coming months.

Sandra Smith
WSGA Publicity Director/ssmith2454@hotmail.com