Two-time defending champion Lara Tennant and three-time champion Ellen Port both rallied to win a pair of matches on Monday to advance to the quarterfinal round of the 59th U.S. Senior Women’s Amateur Championship on the 5,771-yard, par-72 Dogwood Course at The Lakewood Club.
Port, a seven-time USGA champion, was tied through 13 holes in her morning Round-of-32 match with Marilyn Hardy but prevailed, 2&1. Port was 2-down to Therese Quinn through 15 holes in the afternoon Round of 16, but rallied to win Nos.16 and 18, then advanced with a par on the first extra hole.
Tennant, who won the 2018 and 2019 titles (2020 was cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic), extended her win streak in the championship to 15 matches, but it took some doing. The co-medallist and No.1 seed this week, Tennant was 2-down to 2017 champion Judith Kyrinis after eight holes in the morning Round of 32.
Tennant made birdies on the par-4 11th and 14th holes and traded par wins with Kyrinis to send the match to extra holes. Kyrinis, who also reached the final in this championship in 2014, three-putted for bogey from just off the front of the green on the 477-yard, par-5 first hole to lose to Tennant’s two-putt par.
“When I was 2-down, I set a scoring goal for myself, just to think about my own game,” said Tennant, who last lost in the Senior Women’s Amateur in 2017, in the Round of 64 after earning the No.1 seed on her home course, Waverley Country Club. “The goal was two-under and I ended up playing those 10 holes in one-under. I think that helped me redirect my thoughts.”
Tennant was tied with Kelly Nittoli through 10 holes in the Round of 16, then won three straight holes – two with birdies – and closed out the match on the 17th hole, 2&1.
Kathy Hartwiger, the 2002 U.S. Women’s Mid-Amateur champion and the No.5 seed, also won two matches, defeating 2017 U.S. Women’s Mid-Amateur runner-up Mary Jane Hiestand 3&2, in the morning, and overcoming Adrienne MacLean in 20 holes.
No.2 seed and co-medallist Gigi Higgins, No.4 Susan Cohn, and No.8 Sally Krueger also advanced to the quarterfinals. Two matches were suspended by darkness and will resume at 7:30 a.m. CDT.