Monday, July 2, 2012

Michigan Women's Open, Island Resort Championship highlight big week for women's golf in Michigan

For 10 days, the women stole the spotlight of Michigan's golf scene.

Perfect timing, too, because the U.S. Senior Open at Indianwood Golf & Country Club is right around the corner.

Last Wednesday, Katie Burnett used the Michigan Women's Open as her professional debut to prepare for this week's U.S. Women's Open at the American Club in Kohler, Wis.
Crystal Mountain Resort's Mountain Ridge was kind to the 22-year-old from Brunswick, Ga., who recently graduated from South Carolina. She shot a final round 3-under-par 69 for a record-setting 11-under-par 205 total and resounding 10-shot win. It was an impressive show in the 10th anniversary of Crystal Mountain hosting the event (in 19 years).

“I feel pretty awesome right now,” she told tournament PR man Greg Johnson. “I don’t know if I can describe it. It hasn’t quite hit me yet. It gives me a lot of confidence. It was goal of mine to come out and get the confidence and momentum going into the U.S. Open.”

Her 205 was the lowest in tournament history, besting a 10-under performance by 2007 winner Lisa Fernandes. Runner-up Laura Bavaird of Grosse Ile was the only other golfer under par in the 54-hole $36,000 event. Bavaird closed with a 1-over-par 73 for 1-under-par 215, and then headed to Harris, Mich., in the Upper Peninsula for the Symetra Tour's Island Resort Championship at Sweetgrass Golf Club at the Island Resort and Casino. She didn't fare so well there against a tougher, more international field, tying for 46th.

Leah Wigger of Louisville, Ky., shot 73-66-70 to finish at 209 to earn $16,500 of the $110,000 prize money. She won by three shots over three players on the 6,286-yard Sweetgrass to cap off the biggest 10 days of the summer for the women.

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