Last year’s US Girls’ Junior champion Princess Superal kicks off her campaign in the US Women’s Amateur in Oregon Monday (Tuesday in Manila), hopeful of a strong start despite drawing a late start at the Portland Golf Club.
The 156-player field vies in the 36-hole stroke play format with the top 64 advancing to the next phase where play would shift from medal to match. The 36-hole finale is set Aug. 16.
Superal, who nipped now pro Marijosse Navarro of Mexico on the 37th hole to capture the US Girls’ Junior title in Arizona last year, drew Emmy Martin of Florida and local bet Monica Vaughn in the 12:30 p.m. flight on No. 10.
“She’s confident and in high spirits,” said Team ICTSI-The Country Club coach Bong Lopez on the eve of the event which features nine USGA winners. “But she really must be on point with her long irons and rescue clubs.”
Superal has vied in a number of tournaments before heading for Portland, including a runaway win in San Francisco two weeks ago but faces a formidable task in this week’s event given the depth of the competing field.
The Filipina ace, according to Lopez, has also been focusing on physical training to keep her in competitive form in a regular basis and in shape while vying in long courses.
Defending champion Kristen Giliman banners the cast with the 17-year-old Texan playing Haley Moore of California and Lauren Greenlief of Virginia in the 8:05 a.m. flight on No. 1. Moore, 16, earned low amateur honors in the ANA Inspiration, one of five women’s pro majors, last March.
Former Junior World champion Daniella Uy is also in the fold and will play in the 1:10 p.m. group that includes Aussie Keh Wenyung and Britanny Kwon of the US, also on No. 10.
Other USGA winners vying in the event are six-time champion Ellen Port and Eun Jeong Seong, 15, who succeeded Superal as the US Girls’ champion with a dominant performance in Oklahoma last month.