Michigan Women’s Amateur Championship Round Two

Kate Brody from Grand Blanc is one of 32 players to make the cut and advance to "Match Play" seeking a spot in the Round of 16 after "Stroke Play" at Plum Hollow Country Club.

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Plum Hollow Country Club, Southfield, MI — June 11, 2024

The Michigan Women’s Amateur Championship continued today at the beautiful and Challenging Plum Hollow Golf Club in Southfield. As we explained in yesterday’s Round One report, the format for this week-long event is two days of stroke play narrowing the field to the top 32 golfers, who are then paired in match play until a winner is crowned in Friday afternoon’s Champion’s round.

Those players making the cut are listed below.

Elayna Bowser from Dearborn and Maya Hunter from St. Joseph earned Co-Medalist honors with a two-day total of 145, five under par. Both ladies made impressive moves up the leaderboard. Elayna’s opening round 75 tied her for seventh after day one. Her round two total of even-par 70 was a roller coaster ride. Seven birdies, combined with six pars, three bogeys, and two double bogeys, evened the pluses with the minuses.

Maya shot 77 on Monday, tying her for 16th in the field. Today, she became the only golfer to post a round under par in two days of play. Her 68 crafted the tie with Elayna.

The Big Three from The Big Ten

Again, if you were with us yesterday, you know we followed Grand Blanc’s Kate Brody. We did not realize until arriving at the course this morning that the same threesome pairings from Monday were used for Tuesday’s round. They just swapped starting holes from number one to number ten. So today, we expanded our coverage to all three young ladies.

Kate Brody at Plum Hollow CC / Lasco Press Photo

First, we will kill some of the drama, all three golfers made the cut. The story gets better. Playing in Kate’s grouping were Grace Wang from Farmington Hills and Shannon Kennedy from Beverly Hills. Grace is a Michigan Wolverine, and Shannon is a Michigan State Spartan. Kate is a Wisconsin Badger. Thus the nickname “The Big Three from The Big Ten.” No doubt there were likely more Big Ten Golfers in the field. But we are going to focus on these three.

Grace, Shannon, and Kate / Lasco Press Photo

Here is another oddity. Kate and Shannon are best friends. More on that later. Kate won round one between the three. Her 77, one-upped Grace, and Shannon’s 78. All three struggled on holes 10 to 18 yesterday. That one-stroke difference occurred when Kate shot 40, Grace 41, and Shannon 41 on the “backside” of the course.

Left to Right, Grace, Kate, Shannon, and Shannon’s Dad/Caddie Ted Kennedy (honest) / Lasco Press Photo

Playing those holes first today was a huge advantage for the threesome. The par four 13th  hole (the fourth hole of the day for the threesome)had an interesting layout that gave them trouble on day one. Shannon made a bogey on Monday, Kate scored a double bogey six, and Grace a quadruple bogey eight.

Today, all three recorded a par on their scorecards. Good thing! The 14th, a tight par three, provided trouble for two of the ladies. Kate hit the green but needed four putts to find the bottom of the cup. Shannon landed short of the green, down a steep slope. She decided to putt the ball, hoping to guard against a miss-hit with a wedge. Her slap up the slope stopped before reaching the crest of the hill and rolled back to her feet. A second effort sent the ball past the hole, and it took two more strokes before she recorded a double bogey, the same score as Kate.

Grace hit a perfect shot that bounced down the hill on the right side of the green. Two putts for a par avoided trouble. A quick check of the online live scoring showed the three sliding down the leaderboard to a tie for 25th. Just seven positions above the cut line.

We asked Shannon and Kate, after the round, if they like to know where they stood during play. Shannon said, “Never, did we make it in today?” Kate admitted to peaking some during today’s round. Yes, Shannon, all three of you.

The ladies killed the front side of the course, their final nine holes. Kate and Grace each carded a bogey and a birdie, plus seven pars, to finish even with a score of 35 for the nine holes. Shannon went birdie, double bogey, bogey, bogey, and birdie on holes two through six. Three pars closed her final nine with a two over par 37.

All three girls hugged it out on the final hole. All three finished with a two-day total of 152, tied for 10th place.

The Best Friends

We asked Jenn Brody if her daughter had highs and lows on the course. “She is so steady; I am the one who is a wreck; I have to just hold it in.”

Lyn Kennedy, Shannon’s mom, said essentially the same thing. “I have to keep my distance and my comments under my breath. Shannon just deals with things and keeps rolling. They love playing together, they cheer each other on. They are just kids having fun, the way it should be.” Amen to that!

So we asked the girls, How do you, as friends, stay competitive when you are facing off with each other? Jointly, they responded; “We cheer each other on, we talk throughout the round, and there is no pressure or animosity between us.

Shannon Kennedy and Kate Brody / Lasco Press Photo

Despite being tied at the end of stroke play, The Big Three from The Big Ten avoided each other in the first round of match play. It would be great to observe a Kate vs Shannon match, we will keep hoping for that story.

As promised, here are the 32 players who made the cut and their matchups for the round tomorrow. Another crazy note! Kate will face Bridget Boczar; the two have history.

In last year’s Golf Association of Michigan’s 33rd Women’s Championship, a 36-hole stroke play tournament. Kate, Bridget, and Anci Dy of Traverse City were tied at the end of regulation. They went to a sudden-death playoff. Anci Dy dropped out with a higher score after the first hole. On to the second hole of sudden-death. Kate was on the green in regulation, and Bridget was in the green side bunker. Kate three-putted. Bridget blasted out to within two feet of the cup and dropped the putt to grab victory from the jaws of defeat.

You can’t make this stuff up! One more caveat. Check the pairing sheet for tomorrow. You will find Anci Dy’s name. Her opponent? Bridget’s twin sister, Grace Boczar. Yep, unreal!

If that is not enough to convince you to come out tomorrow to Plum Hollow Country Club (Lasher, just north of 8 Mile Road in Southfield) to watch these women play. You are just not a golf fan. Oh, by the way, admission is free.

Time Players

 

Tomorrow

Yes, we will be back on the course tomorrow to see how the day plays out. Check-in Thursday morning for the outcome. And, we will feature some of the signature holes at Plum Hollow with the story of how the course came to its present layout. It’s a great read, also.