Canada’s Ward is medalist at U.S. Women’s Mid-Amateur

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Casey Ward (USGA/ Matt Sullivan)

CHOUDRANT, La. – Casey Ward, 25, of Picton, Ont., followed Saturday’s round of 2-over 74 with a 2-under 70 on Sunday to earn stroke-play medalist honours at the 29th U.S. Women’s Mid-Amateur Championship, being conducted at the 6,061-yard, par-72 Squire Creek Country Club.

Ward, who finished at even-par 144, is the second Women’s Mid-Amateur medalist from Canada and first since former Team Canada member Mary Ann Hayward, the 2005 Women’s Mid-Amateur champion, did so in 1998. Entering the day two strokes behind Sarah Davison, Ward posted four birdies and two bogeys on the day to record the low round of stroke play.

“I’m really excited. I didn’t really have too many expectations coming into this week,” said Ward, the 2015 Ontario Women’s Mid-Amateur champion. “That’s how I have approached things all summer, not going in with any expectations and just playing my game. It’s nice to see my name at the top.”

Starting on the 10th hole, Ward started with three pars before birdieing the par-4 13th and par-4 15th holes. She was able to overcome Squire Creek’s difficult greens by consistently giving herself good birdie opportunities.

“I was in the right position all day, for the most part,” she said. “I had a lot of good looks at birdie. I only got a few to fall, but I was right on the edge all day.”

Two other Canadians advanced to match play including Shelly Stouffer of Nanoose Bay, B.C., who finished tied for 17th at 13-over 157 and Christina Proteau of Port Alberni, B.C., tied for 29th at 15-over 159.

A Monday-morning playoff will determine the final seven spots in the 64-player match-play field. Eleven players will compete for those spots, beginning at 8 a.m. CDT.

The 2015 U.S. Women’s Mid-Amateur Championship is open to female amateur golfers with a Handicap Factor not exceeding 9.4. It consists of 36 holes of stroke play followed by six rounds of match play, with the championship scheduled to conclude with an 18-hole final on Thursday, Oct. 8.

The U.S. Women’s Mid-Amateur Championship is one of 13 national championship conducted annually by the United States Golf Association, 10 of which are strictly for amateurs.