By MATT HARNESS
PARK RIDGE, Ill. (July 20, 2021) – Lindsay May, of Auburn, New York, shot a career-best 6-under 66 on Tuesday and sits alone in first place after the first round of the 121st Women’s Western Amateur at Park Ridge Country Club.
A senior at Clemson, the 21-year-old May started on the back nine and surged to the top of the leaderboard with four consecutive birdies midway through her round. After back-to-back bogeys dropped her off the pace, May rebounded with two finishing birdies, making a 24-footer on the par-3 ninth to establish the women’s course record on the 6,263-yard layout.
The previous record of 69 – beaten by several players on Tuesday – was held by golf legend Babe Didrikson Zaharias, who won the 1944 Women’s Western Open at Park Ridge.
“I had no idea, but that’s cool,” May said. “My putter was the key. I had a lot of confidence in it. I made a couple of nice par saves early and then made some long ones for birdie.”
Emma McMyler, of San Antonio, Texas; Clara Moyano, of Madrid, Spain; and Marissa Wenzler, of Dayton, Ohio, all are tied for second at 5-under par.
McMyler is continuing her strong play following a phenomenal freshman season at Xavier, where she earned Big East Player of the Year honors. Prior to arriving in Park Ridge, she won both the Women’s Texas Amateur and the Texas Golf Association’s Women’s Stroke Play Championship. She also qualified for the U.S. Women’s Amateur in August.
McMyler carded five birdies and no bogeys Tuesday. She credited her clean scorecard to hitting fairways.
“That’s the most important thing out here,” she said. “It allowed me to play an easy round.”
This is one of the last amateur tournaments for Moyano, a Mississippi State graduate. She plans to turn professional and enter LPGA Q-School later this year.
“Good start,” Moyano said. “I didn’t have too much trouble all day.”
As a sophomore at Kentucky, Wenzler helped the Wildcats to their first appearance in the NCAA national championship since 1992.
The youngest player in the field, Leigh Chien, of Irvine, California, is one of four players at 4-under par. During her roller coaster first round Chien, who will graduate from high school in 2024, made six birdies and one eagle to go with two bogeys and one double bogey.
A total of 29 players broke par Tuesday. Defending champion Brigitte Thibault, of Rosemere, Quebec, opened with a 2-over 74. After the second round of stroke play Wednesday, the field will be cut to the top 32 players for match play.
Held without interruption since its inception in 1901, the Women’s Western Amateur is among the oldest and most prestigious annual championships in women’s amateur golf. The tournament is conducted jointly by the Women’s Western Golf Association and the Western Golf Association and features the top amateur and collegiate players from across the globe.
The list of past champions spans more than a century, from legendary stars Patty Berg, Louise Suggs and Nancy Lopez to modern standouts like Cristie Kerr, Brittany Lang, Stacy Lewis and Ariya Jutanugarn.
Attendance and parking for the Women’s Western Amateur are free.
To view the full leaderboard, click here.
To view tee times, click here.