Lowe/Cupp On Top After Second Round of the NYS Women's Am & Mid-Am
LOUDONVILLE, N.Y. -- Alix Lowe, of Colonial Springs Golf Club, matched par during the second round of the 88th NYS Women’s Amateur Championship and holds a 2-stroke lead over the field headed into tomorrow’s final round at Schuyler Meadows Club.
Lowe’s even par-72 was a number she was confident would give her a good chance headed into the final round. “I was paying attention to Alexis and Ina’s scores,” said Lowe about Alexis Hios (Westchester Country Club) and Ina Kim (Deepdale Golf Club), who played alongside her in the final group today. “I knew I had to shoot around even to have a chance of taking the lead.” She did just that with a strong finish on her back nine (#1 – 10). After a bogey on the 380-yard par-4 first, she proceeded to knock down two birdies on the two par-5’s #3 and #5 to hit her number.
If Lowe could pull out a victory tomorrow, this would be her second major women’s amateur win in two weeks. “Winning this would mean a lot, it would honestly put my whole future in perspective,” said the 19-year-old from Farmingdale.
The recent WMGA/MGA Women’s Met Amateur Champion, outplayed her college teammate and yesterday’s leader Alexis Hios, to reverse the order atop the leaderboard. Lowe, currently sits at 2-under par with a two-round total of 142.
Hios, on the other hand, came in at 4-over and has a two-round total of even-par 144 after yesterday’s stellar round of 68. “After the first day of an event, when you come out shooting a very low score, you always feel like there’s expectations to come back with something else,” she mentioned. “I think the expectations got the best of me today. Although I’m happy where I stand.” Her game plan will remain the same tomorrow. “My putting was a little off today. I was questioning myself over a lot. Tomorrow, I’ll just try to take my time and make a few more putts.”
The two teammates at Towson will play together in the final pairing, set to tee off at 9:39am off #1. Joining them as the third is Marianna Monaco, of Yonkers, who recently graduated from the University of South Carolina where she played women’s golf.
Monaco, Jenny Buchanan, and Sara Riso sit tied at third at 4-over par through two rounds with totals of 148.
Buchanan, the Albany-native and Schuyler Meadow member, moved up on the leaderboard today but struggled on tough setup with five bogeys and one double during her round. “When I struggled, I just tried to keep it to a bogey and not let it get any worse than that,” uttered Buchanan. “I’m going to use tomorrow as a learning experience. I’m not focused on the results, but more on the process.”
A cut was applied to the low 50% of the field and ties after today’s round and the cut fell at 20-over 164. Seventeen players will tee of tomorrow morning for the final round of action.
In the Women’s Mid-Amateur Division, Lauren Cupp of Yahnundasis Golf Club stands alone at the top of the field after a 75, the lowest Mid-Am score of the tournament thus far. Her total heading into the final round is 9-over 155, a two-stroke advantage over the field.
Her confidence is high headed into tomorrow’s final round at Schuyler’s pristine track. “I like this classic style course, it suits me very well,” Cupp said. She’s found her way into the final group in both the last two NYS Women’s Amateurs (2015 at Tuscarora and 2016 at Elmira). Both times, she came up short. “I think I’ve learned a lot from the past two years,” she mentioned. “My heads more in the right place now. I’m able to get over bad shots a little bit better than I used to.” Cupp exemplified just that today when she went birdie-double on #7 and #8. She parred the next nine holes and managed to make one other bogey on the par-4 seventeenth hole which doglegs left to a tough elevated green.
Joining her in the final pairing is, yesterday’s leader Julie Murphy of Brookfield Country Club and Kim Kaul of Gowanda Country Club. The two from Buffalo are tied for second at 157 (11-over).
Kaul has seen her fair share of success in amateur events. She’s won the NYS Women’s Senior Amateur twice (2008 and 2015 at Holiday Valley & Thendara) and has finished as runner-up in both the Women’s Amateur and Mid-Amateur. She’s also qualified for the US Senior Women’s Amateur, USGA Women’s State championships and the US Women’s Four-Ball. Although she remains in second, she feels her score can certainly improve tomorrow. “I was lucky coming in…I didn’t hit fairways, I didn’t hit greens. Tomorrow is about finding a comfort zone.”
A trio of players are within five strokes of the leader, Cupp, including Mary Scatena and Nancy Kroll of Pinehaven and Louise-Ann Morin of McCann Golf Club.
Today’s 36-hole cut fell at 25-over 171. In line with the Amateur division, the Mid-Am’s cut kept seventeen players who will continue into tomorrow’s final day of play.
Tee times begin at 8:00am tomorrow alternating between divisions off #1.