Historic Spring Lake CC Hosting Michigan Women’s Am

Historic Spring Lake Country Club Hosting Michigan Women’s Amateur 

  SPRING LAKE – A significant amount of the history of women in golf in Michigan, especially competitive women’s golf, has happened at Spring Lake Country Club. 

  Another chapter will unfold when the club hosts the 107th Michigan Women’s Amateur Championship presented by Carl’s Golfland,  Monday through Friday, Aug. 7-11. 

  The top players in the state will compete over two days of stroke play to determine a match play bracket of 32 golfers. The round of 32 is Wednesday with the round of 16 and quarterfinals on Thursday and semifinals and final match on Friday. 

  Defending champion Anci Dy of Traverse City, and her older sister Anika who she defeated in the championship match a year ago, will not be at Spring Lake. They qualified for the U.S. Women’s Amateur Championship along with Grand Blanc’s Kate Brody. The national championship also starts Monday at Bel-Air Country Club in Los Angeles. 

  Among the top players who will be in Spring Lake are Kimberly Dinh, the 2021 Michigan Women’s Amateur champion and reigning GAM Women’s Mid-Amateur champion, and Julie Massa, last summer’s Michigan Senior Women’s Amateur Champion and seven-time GAM Senior Women’s Player of the Year. 

  Many of the state’s top collegiate players who were part of the “Sweet 16” in the championship a year ago, are in the field, including 2022 Women’s Amateur semifinalist Megha Vallabhaneni of Northville and Western Michigan University, recent GAM Women’s Champion Bridget Boczar of Canton and Oakland University, the 2022 GAM Women’s Champion Sophie Stevens of Highland and soon the University of Florida, Ferris State University golfer Kamryn Shannon of Jackson, Grand Valley State golfer Olivia Stoll of Haslett, Western Michigan golfer Alissa Fish of Clark Lake, Northern Michigan University golfer Maya Hunter of St. Joseph and University of Delaware golfer Lilia Henkel of Grand Rapids. 

  Lauren Timpf of Macomb, the winner of the Michigan Girls’ Junior State Amateur earlier this summer and in 2021, leads a group of standout junior players. Lily Bargamian of Grosse Ile, the runner-up to Timpf in the Junior State Amateur a few weeks ago, is playing, as is stroke play medalist from the Junior State Amateur, Alena Li of Okemos. 

  Spring Lake Country Club’s involvement with women’s golf dates to 1919 and the first time it hosted what became the Spring Lake Invitational, which was presented in June for the 102nd time and can boast a remarkable list of past competitors, even legend Babe Zaharias. 

  This will be the third time Spring Lake has hosted the Michigan Women’s Amateur since 2015. 

  In the 2015 Amateur at Spring Lake, Allyson Geer of Brighton became the youngest Michigan Women’s Amateur champion ever at age 16. She topped Hailey Hrynewich of Muskegon in 19 holes. In 2019, Elayna Bowser of Dearborn beat Michigan State University women’s golf coach Stacy Slobodnik-Stoll 4 and 3 in the title match. 

  “Two great tournaments, I guess we feel why not do it again?” Spring Lake member Pat McGurk said. “Our club has a wonderful history and we enjoy being part of women’s golf history in Michigan, too.” 

  GAM legend Patti Shook Boice is sure to be part of the enthusiastic Spring Lake members on hand. In 2017 the championship’s trophy officially became the Patti Shook Boice Trophy, which adds another layer of history. Boice is a record six-time winner of the Michigan Women’s Amateur, a record 13-time Spring Lake Invitational winner and a Michigan Golf Hall of Fame member. 

  The classic Spring Lake course dates to 1911 when the newly formed club retained legendary course designer Tom Bendelow. He was paid $50 and he laid out a six-hole course with clay greens. Following the addition of three holes in 1919, Bendelow returned in 1920 to add another nine holes. 

  Renovations have followed over the years, including three by the Grand Haven-based Matthews family of golf course architects –  W. Bruce Matthews, Jerry Matthews and W. Bruce III. In 2022 Toledo-based Drew Rogers, who built a master plan in 2013 for the club, completed a renovation of the bunkers across the course, including the location of some of them. 

  Ken Hartmann, senior director of competitions for the GAM, said the golf course has held its own in the past two Women’s Amateurs played on it. 

  “It’s tight with some very challenging greens, and it will be interesting to see what the new bunkering brings,” he said. “The golfers will have to be careful where they put their ball. Hole locations can be challenging. It’s one of those great traditional shot-maker’s courses. The premium is putting the ball in play off the tee, and then staying below the hole on the greens.” 


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