Olivia Mehaffey has been given a welcomed invite to compete amongst the pros as the first stop on the 2021 “Road to the LPGA” takes the Symetra Tour to Longbow Golf Club in the Grand Canyon State for the inaugural Carlisle Arizona Women’s Golf Classic from March 18-21.
After receiving sponsor invites from Carlisle Companies, world number 20 ranked amateur, Mehaffey will compete alongside fellow amateurs Rose Zhang and Ashley Menne. It’s further exposure to the paid circuit for Royal County Down and Tandragee star, Mehaffey, who made her first cut at a women’s Major at last year’s ANA Inspiration.
An amateur standout in Ireland, the now Arizona State stalwart won the 2016 Irish Women’s Open Championship and the Welsh Ladies Open Stroke Play Championship, and helped lead the Great Britain & Ireland team to the Curtis Cup victory. The four-time All-American Sun Devil made her first appearance in a professional event at the 2016 AIG Women’s Open while her inclusion in next week’s Symetra event has been welcomed by her Coach at ASU.
“On behalf of the Sun Devil Women’s Golf team, we are excited to have Olivia and Ashley be invited by Carlisle Companies to play in the Symetra event coming up in Mesa, Arizona at the Longbow Golf Club,” said ASU Women’s Head Coach Missy Farr-Kaye. “It is exciting to see these talented young ladies compete at such a high level in our own backyard. We are looking forward to watching our Sun Devils compete in such a premier women’s golf tournament that is the pathway to the LPGA Tour.”
Chief Business Officer of LPGA Qualifying Tours, Mike Nichols added: “The tremendous support from our sponsors is what has allowed us to set up a great season ahead with twenty tournaments, across thirteen states, with our highest average purse in history. We look forward to returning to Longbow Golf Club next week and seeing all the hard work our members have put in the last few months.”
Greeting the 132-player field in Mesa, Arizona is a total purse of $200,000. Individuals are set to compete in a 72-hole stroke play format with a cut to the low 60 players and ties after 36 holes. The winner’s share for the event is $30,000 although Mehaffey and her amateur colleagues won’t qualify for any financial reward.
Last year, Sarah White (Grand Rapids, Michigan) claimed her first win on the Symetra Tour at Longbow Golf Club. She earned a spot in the field last year after receiving an exemption from her performance on the Women’s All Pro-Tour and earned full membership for the Road to the LPGA following her win in Mesa.
“What I liked about Longbow Golf Club is that you can be aggressive with some holes and other holes you have to play conservative. This course makes you think and if you can execute your own game plan that you can score really well,” said White. “I love the course. I love the atmosphere. It’s where my pro career changed forever, and I will always cherish the memories.”