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|For Immediate Release||July 15, 2022|
|HISTORY ON THE NORTH SHORE: WESTMORELAND WELCOMES 91ST ILLINOIS STATE AM|
|Friday, July 15, 2022 - |
LEMONT, Ill. - When one thinks of the Illinois State Amateur Championship, widely considered the premier amateur golf event in the state, the legendary names who have graced the Louis L. Emmerson Trophy and the historic venues that have played host to it immediately come to mind. With all of that pondered, it may come as a shock that the championship has never before been contested on the North Shore, a notable hotbed for golf in the Chicago District.
That changes this year, as the 91st edition heads to Westmoreland Country Club in Wilmette, July 19-21. A strong field of elite amateurs will compete in the famed event, as they look to join the likes of Jim Frisina, Sr., Joel Hirsch and D.A. Points in Illinois golf glory.
The Illinois State Amateur is a three-day, 72-hole stroke-play event that will truly test the mind and body of every competitor. The entire field will play 18-hole rounds on Tuesday, July 19 and Wednesday, July 20, before a cut will be made to the low 35 and ties. The reward for advancing? 36 more holes on Thursday, July 21 to crown a champion.
ABOUT THE FIELD
This year's Championship field of 136 emerged from an initial pool of 577 registrants, the most since 2016. Sign up for any of the eight qualifiers held across the state in June was open to any Illinois resident with a Handicap Index® of 7.4 or below. In total, 114 players advanced to the Championship from those qualifiers, with 22 spots going to players who earned exemptions from past performances in the State Am and other CDGA-administered tournaments.
Players to Watch
ABOUT THE COURSE - WESTMORELAND COUNTRY CLUB
Westmoreland Country Club's name is derived from Scotsman David McCurrach Jr., part of a group of men from Evanston Golf Club who, in 1911, moved "west for more land" after being frustrated with spacial limitations at their former club. The original course design was handled by William Watson in 1912, who would go on to design the Olympic Club's Lake Course. The Colonial Williamsburg-style Clubhouse was also erected in 1912.
Changes made to Westmoreland's layout began in the early 1920s, as historic architects William Langford and A.W. Tillinghast performed a redesign in 1920-21. 1963 brought about changes to the ponds on Nos. 13, 15 and 17. Arthur Hills added the pond on No. 8 during a major renovation in 1993. Over the years, many legends of the game have been tested by the track, including Bobby Jones, Chick Evans, Francis Ouimet, and Walter Hagan.
To that end, Westmoreland's history also lies in the many prominent golf tournaments it's hosted throughout the years. Jim Barnes won the 1917 Western Open, with Walter Hagan finishing three strokes back. In 1921, Chick Evans captured the sixth of his eight Western Amateur titles. Patty Berg, who holds the all-time record for major wins by a female golfer with 15, emerged victorious in the 1938 U.S. Women's Amateur at the age of 20. Lastly, Westmoreland played host to its only other CDGA-administered championship in 2019, when Jeff Ott claimed the Illinois State Senior Amateur Championship.
2021 ILLINOIS STATE AMATEUR
Last year, the 90th Illinois State Amateur visited Romeoville's Mistwood Golf Club, after the event was canceled for the first time ever in 2020 due to COVID-19. St. Mary's senior Ethan Farnam successfully defended his title from 2019, becoming just the 16th player to win the event multiple times and the 10th to go back-to-back. Farnam, the left-handed Crystal Lake native, who held at least a share of the lead through the first three rounds, had a six-shot advantage heading into the final 18 holes.
Farnam eventually regressed back to the field in the final round, and a bogey on No. 16 set him back to second, behind 2019 CDGA Amateur champion Jordan Less and 2021 Big Ten Individual champ Mac McClear. After a drive through the fairway and into the water on the par-5 18th, Farnam masterfully executed a 6 iron to a foot, yielding a birdie to enter a three-hole aggregate playoff with Less and McClear. Another birdie on 18 would later secure the title for Farnam, who will not be in the field this week as he begins his professional career.
The Illinois State Am is set to return to Bloomington Country Club for the ninth time in 2023. The two most recent champions at Bloomington, Luke Guthrie (2009) and Jordan Hahn (2018), have each made their PGA Tour debuts since turning pro.
By the Numbers
+5.4: The lowest Handicap Index® in the field, Tommy Kuhl
+1.0: The average Handicap Index® of the 136-golfer field
1: This year marks the first time the State Am has visited Chicago's North Shore
2: The number of players in the field attempting to follow in their fathers' footsteps by winning an Illinois State Championship - Jack Mortell, son of Mike (1990 Illinois State Amateur winner) and Mason Minkel, son of Curtis (2002 Illinois State Mid-Amateur champion)
6: The number of players in the field age 50 and older
16: The combined number of wins in CDGA-administered championships by the field
28: The number of teenagers in the field
54: The number of players in the field born in the 2000s
68: The age of reigning CDGA Senior Amateur champion Dave Ryan, the oldest player in the field
78: The number of clubs represented by the 136-golfer field
136: Each player in the 2022 Illinois State Am field is seeking their first victory in the event
577: The number of initial registrants that attempted to make the field of 136, the most since 2016
2006: The year Connor O'Hara (16), the youngest player in the field, was born
6,852: The total distance Westmoreland Country Club will play for the 2022 State Amateur
|Chicago District Golf Association|
The Chicago District Golf Association (CDGA) is authorized by the United States Golf Association (USGA) as the governing body for amateur golf in our region. The CDGA is a membership organization consisting of nearly 90,000 individual golfers and 400 clubs in Illinois and parts of Indiana, Michigan and Wisconsin. Golfers receive member offers, a Handicap Index® from the USGA® and competitive playing opportunities, while clubs receive USGA rating and measuring services, turfgrass diagnostics and educational seminars. Midwest Golf House and the Bob Berry Sunshine Course are home to the CDGA Foundation, which annually serves more than 1,000 individuals with special needs and wounded veterans while also bringing playing opportunities to youth golfers. Founded on March 18, 1914, the CDGA is one of the largest and oldest golf associations in the United States.
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|07/21/2022||McCLEAR FULFILLS LIFELONG JOURNEY, CAPTURES 91ST ILLINOIS STATE AMATEUR CHAMPIONSHIP|
|07/20/2022||McCLEAR REMAINS ATOP STATE AM LEADERBOARD FOLLOWING GRUELING WEDNESDAY AT WESTMORELAND|
|07/19/2022||HINSDALE`S MCCLEAR TAKES EARLY LEAD IN 91st ILLINOIS STATE AMATEUR|
|07/15/2022||HISTORY ON THE NORTH SHORE: WESTMORELAND WELCOMES 91ST ILLINOIS STATE AM|
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|05/26/2022||RYAN REIGNS AGAIN, SECURES 20TH CDGA SENIOR AMATEUR CHAMPIONSHIP|
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