Defending Champion Off to Strong Start
Duncan, the 22-year-old from Shreveport, La., who recently completed her college career at LSU, was a stroke behind Curtis Cup teammate Courtney Swaim after the first of two rounds of stroke-play qualifying on the Sleepy Hollow Country Club course.
The low 64 scorers after the second round will advance to match play, beginning Wednesday. The 36-hole final is Saturday.
Duncan, who clinched the United States' Curtis Cup victory over Britain and Ireland two weeks ago in Pittsburgh, is trying to reclaim the Robert Cox Cup after shipping the trophy back to the U.S. Golf Association four weeks ago.
'If that wasn't motivation to repeat, then I don't know what is,'' said Duncan, who will turn pro after the tournament.
Duncan revealed her hiding place for the Cox Cup - the bathtub in her family's home.
'When I was in college, we had a security expert speak to my sorority,'' Duncan explained 'He said that's one of the best places to hide something in case there's a robbery. What are they going to steal in the bathroom - shampoo or a razor?
'So when I'm traveling or when no one is at home, the trophy went into the tub, and I pulled the shower curtain to hide it.''
Swaim, the Sugar Hill, Ga., player coming off her final year at Auburn, had six birdies and two bogeys on the hilly course.
'I clubbed myself well today, both uphill and downhill,'' she said. 'I've been playing well the last three weeks, and I gave myself good chances today by hitting it close.''
Swaim also is making her final amateur appearance.
'You don't come here to play unless you want to win,'' she said. 'I can't wait to get this stroke play over with. Hopefully, I'll be here Saturday.''
Maru Martinez of Venezuela, playing her first USGA event as she prepares for her freshman year at Auburn, and Danielle Downey of Spencerport, N.Y., opened with 69s, and 16-year-old South Korean star Aree Wongluekiet topped a group at 70.
Wongluekiet was 5 under after nine holes, but finished with a 4-over 39 on the front nine.
Wongluekiet tied for 10th in the LPGA Tour's 2000 Nabisco Championship, and also tied Angela Jerman as the low amateur this year in the U.S. Women's Open at Prairie Dunes. She won the 1999 U.S. Girls' Junior, becoming the youngest champion in tournament history at 13 years, 3 months, 7 days.
Canada's Alena Sharp also shot a 70 that included the first hole in one of her career. Sharp, a senior at New Mexico, used a 6-iron to ace the 194-yard seventh hole.
Carol Semple Thompson, the 53-year-old star coming off a strong performance in her 12th Curtis Cup appearance, shot a 72. Semple Thompson, from Sewickley, Pa., won the 1973 tournament for the first of her six USGA titles. She has won the last three U.S. Senior Women's Amateur titles.
Duncan, with father Dave serving as her caddie for the second straight year, had four birdies and a bogey.
'I'm still on a high from the Curtis Cup,'' she said. 'Even though I didn't play my best golf, I've worked on my game since then and I expect to do well here.
'There is no particular number in my head. The last thing I want to do is put extra pressure on myself. That's when you don't accomplish anything.''
Rose weathering delayed Indonesian Masters
JAKARTA, Indonesia - Justin Rose held a three-stroke lead after eight holes of the third round Saturday when play was suspended for the day due to bad weather at the Indonesian Masters.
Rose was 3-under on the day and led his playing partners Kiradech Aphibarnrat and Scott Vincent. The Englishman led both players by a stroke after the second round was completed Saturday morning due to weather delays on Friday.
Brandt Snedeker withdrew with apparent heat exhaustion on Friday on the 11th hole of the second round. Ranked 51st in the world, he flew to Jakarta looking to move inside the top 50 by the end of the year and ensure a spot in next year's Masters.
Lexi (wrist) WDs from Diamond Resorts Invitational
Lexi Thompson on Friday withdrew from the Diamond Resorts Invitational, citing inflammation in her wrist. Thompson, who teamed with Tony Finau to finish tied for fourth place in last week's QBE Shootout, said she is under strict doctor's order not to hit golf balls until mid-January.
The Diamond Resorts Invitational is scheduled Jan. 12-14 at Tranquilo Golf Club in Orlando, Fla. The field for te 54-hole event includes LPGA and PGA Tour Champions players, as well as celebrities from the worlds or sports and entertainment.
Rose leads Indonesian Masters; Snedeker WDs
JAKARTA, Indonesia - Justin Rose completed the final two holes of his second round early Saturday for a 3-under 69 and a one-stroke lead at the Indonesian Masters.
Rose, who had a first-round 62, was among a quarter of the field forced off the Royale Jakarta Golf Club course after weather delays on Friday.
The Englishman, who bogeyed his last hole, had a two-round total of 13-under 131.
Kiradech Aphibarnrat, who completed his 64 on Friday, was in second place.
Brandt Snedeker withdrew with apparent heat exhaustion on Friday on the 11th hole of the second round. Ranked 51st in the world, he flew to Jakarta looking to move inside the top 50 by the end of the year and ensure a spot in next year's Masters. He has been affected by a rib-sternum injury for most of the season.
Newsmaker of the Year: No. 2, Donald Trump
Even away from the White House, President Donald Trump generated plenty of headlines this year.
Trump’s first year in office didn’t dim his enthusiasm for the game, as he made splashy appearances at two big events, tweeted about golf to his more than 44 million followers, teed it up with some of the sport’s biggest stars, including Tiger Woods, Rory McIlroy and Lexi Thompson, and fired a few eyebrow-raising scores. Logging more than 75 rounds since his inauguration, the 3-handicap has only bolstered his reputation as the best golfing president, particularly after his alleged 73 with Sen. Lindsey Graham.
None of his appearances created a bigger stir than when he attended the U.S. Women’s Open. Despite protests and calls for the USGA to move its premier women’s event from Trump Bedminster – the president reportedly threatened to sue – his weekend there went off without incident, as Trump watched the action and hosted players in his private box near the 15th green.
Despite his controversial rhetoric on a variety of national issues, Trump has remained a staunch supporter of women’s golf, and he became the first sitting president to attend the U.S. Women’s Open.
An honorary chairman of the Presidents Cup, Trump also flew to Liberty National for the biennial team event, where he presented the trophy to the U.S. team and dedicated the victory to the hurricane victims in Texas, Florida and Puerto Rico.
In late November, amid tweets about the national anthem, Turkey, Egypt and Time Magazine, Trump announced that he was playing a round in South Florida with Woods and world No. 1 Dustin Johnson.
Yes, that too became a headline, just like everything else Trump did in 2017.
Playing with the pros
Tiger, DJ and Faxon
President at the Presidents Cup
Purported round of 73 with Lindsey Graham
Cart on the green
Presence and protests at U.S. Women's Open
Trump golf properties
Reportedly fake TIME covers
Trump apologizes for voter-fraud story
Pros comment on the president