Canada’s Shelly Stouffer wins first-ever USGA championship on Alaskan soil
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (KTUU) - Alaska was the 50th and final state to host a United State Golf Association Championship when the 60th U.S. Senior Women’s Amateur came to the Anchorage Golf Course this past week. 415 golfers entered, 132 qualified and one came out as a champion after six days of competition.
Canada’s Shelly Stouffer and Australia’s Sue Wooster made their way through the bracket of 64 in head-to-head play, leading to one final match Thursday between the two International golfers, with the winner determined by one golfer winning by more holes than remain to be played.
Stouffer won hole one three strokes to four, and never looked back, winning holes four, six, eight and nine without dropping one. Stouffer stayed on par with Wooster, where her putt-in on hole 15 matched Wooster’s score of four, lifting Stouffer as the 60th U.S. Senior Women’s Amateur Champion. She lifted the trophy that her name will be engraved on with the rest of the past champs.
“I don’t know, it’s this huge thing, the magnitude is huge but it like, I haven’t really cried, a little bit, but I’m like, it’s so awesome, I don’t know it’s just amazing,” Stouffer said trying to find the words to describe the moment.
Stouffer shot a forgettable 81 during stroke play on the first day of competition, before turning around to shoot a 68 the following day, which is believed to be a women’s tournament record at the Anchorage Golf Course.
“I don’t know I just started making birdies, started hitting really good shots, some putts fell that maybe at the beginning I didn’t think they were going to go in but they’d go in, and kind of went off to the races. And just built on it every day since that first day, and match play, just felt confident.”
Throughout the tournament, Stouffer’s 15-year-old son, Brett, caddied for the champion as they garnered superstitious and good luck charms.
“We’ve got the birdie bracelet, we’ve got the birdie ball, we’ve got the birdie bra, but anyways, and the birdie shoes, can’t forget the shoes,” Stouffer recalled, as Brett drew a bird on one of her golf balls after not getting a birdie on day one.
Over the six-day tournament, hundreds of golfers from all over the world competed at the Anchorage Golf Course for the first time in a tournament the likes of which the course has never seen.
“Anchorage Golf Course is amazing, the volunteers were phenomenal, everybody was so friendly, the range guys were great, the shuttle drivers, so amazing. Very welcoming, it is a great place,” Stouffer said.
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