THOMPSONVILLE – A record 114 entries, including defending champion and former Notre Dame golfer Becca Huffer of Littleton, Colo., will tee off Monday for the start of the 22nd Michigan Women’s Open Championship hosted by Crystal Mountain Resort.
The $42,000, 54-hole state championship administered by the Michigan Section of the PGA of America, will run through next Wednesday.
The Michigan Women’s Open is not restricted to Michigan residents. Typically the field includes the top professionals and amateurs with Michigan ties as well as LPGA Symetra Tour players and mini-tour professionals from across the country and other nations as well.
Huffer, a Symetra Tour player is returning to defend her championship.
Also in the field is Whitehall’s Laura Kueny, the former Michigan State star now on the Symetra Tour, past champion and former LPGA Tour and current Legends Tour star Elaine Crosby of Jackson and former LPGA Tour player Sue Ertl of Ionia.
Michigan State University women’s golf coach Stacy Slobodnik-Stoll, who recently won her eighth Michigan Women’s Mid-Amateur Championship and is the winningest amateur golfer in state history with 15 major titles, is in the field as are 19 other golfers with Michigan State ties from the powerhouse Big Ten program she had built over the years.
This year the championship falls on the calendar between two Symetra Tour events in Michigan – the June 26-28 Island Resort Championship in Harris and the inaugural July 3-5 Tullymore Classic at Tullymore Golf Resort in Stanwood. Kueny has been featured in promotional materials and on Michigan billboards for the Symetra Tour’s visit to Tullymore later in the tournament week.
“The schedule works so I can play in our state championship and be on the Symetra Tour, so that’s perfect,” Kueny said. “It’s tough traveling around the country, so having two events I really want to play in close to home and back-to-back in the same week at great Michigan resorts is great for me, my family and a lot of other Symetra Tour players. I’m proud of being a Michigan Women’s Open champion. It is part of the reason I’m chasing this dream of being on the LPGA Tour.”
The format is 54 holes of stroke play, and the field will be cut to the low 70 scorers and ties after 36 holes of play.
Crystal Mountain Resort and Spa in Thompsonville is hosting the state championship for the 13th consecutive year. Established in 1956, Crystal Mountain is a family-owned, four-season resort that is nationally recognized for its skiing, golf and award-winning spa.
Located in northwest-lower-Michigan, a short drive from Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore, the resort features downhill and cross-country skiing, Michigan Legacy Art Park, 36 holes of championship golf, Michigan’s only alpine slide, an outdoor water playground, a variety of lodging and dining options, countless year-round activities and kids programs, an IACC-approved conference center, weddings, real estate and Crystal Spa. See www.crystalmountain.com .
Tee times and other information can be found at www.michiganpgagolf.com under the Events pull-down tab. Justin Phillips of the Michigan PGA is the tournament director and available at 517-641-7421 or [email protected].
As always, the Michigan Women’s Open offers free parking and admission. Spectators are welcome and can be shuttled to various spots on the course.