Annie Park, the 17-year-old standout from Levittown, is going to the U.S. Women's Open. Not only did the MacArthur High School junior qualify at a sectional tournament Tuesday at Trump National in Colts Neck, N.J., she had the best score. After a first round 78, she shot 65 in the second round to win medalist honors in a field that included many pros, including Grace Park, a major champion on the LPGA Tour.
Park said that switching to a new STX putter really helped, particularly in the second round, when she made eight birdies and only one bogey. The 7 under finish came within one of her all-time best.
"I was really happy. This was one of my goals, from way back," she said from the Scott Robertson Memorial Tournament in Roanoke, Va. "I feel like I've accomplished something. It was a relief."
Park reached the semifinals of the U.S Women's Amateur last year, defeating Cheyenne Woods, Tiger's niece, and announced recently that she will attend USC after graduating high school next January.
The Women's Open will be at Blackwolf Run in Kohler, Wis. July 5-8, and will be held next year at Sebonack Golf Club in Southampton.
An ace on his 25th hole
Often, a golfer will report being thrilled about getting a hole-in-one after having played for a quarter of a century or more. For Stan Siejka of Southold, it was a little different. He reports having made an ace on his 25th hole.
He usually has to repeat it for people who assume he means 25 years, but he assures them it was only 25 holes. Seijka recalled that his two grown sons invited him out to Cedars Golf Club in Cutchogue on Easter weekend and he agreed, figuring he was just going along to watch. When they got there, Adam, 25, told his dad that his green fee was paid for and that he was playing.
Siejka liked it enough to play again the next day, and then the next week. On the seventh hole of his third nine-hole round, he said, he made his 100-yard pitching wedge shot. He said there were several witnesses, including one who said he has been playing 45 years and never had an ace.
Joyce caddies for his pupil
Cool sight at the recent U.S. Open Local Qualifying Round at Wheatley Hills: Southampton Golf Club pro emeritus Bob Joyce caddying for 15-year-old Michael Mirenda of Selden, one of his students. Joyce said Mirenda's talent is similar to that of a teenaged Bruce Zabriski, who followed Joyce's teaching and made the PGA Tour. In fact, the last time before last week that Joyce caddied was for Zabriski at the World Series of Golf 15 years ago.
Ralph Howe III of West Sayville, former U.S. Public Links Champion, had preliminary discussions about helping out with China's Olympic golf team for the 2106 Olympics. But he is too busy with his full-time golf teaching job in China . . . John Yu of Fresh Meadows, who won two events on the Met PGA Junior circuit last year and is a freshman at Barry University in Miami, Fla., made it through U.S. Open local qualifying at Alpine, N.J. . . . Abbie Valentine, a pro from Bayville, advanced at a local qualifier in Naples, Fla.