One week after the USGA announced a record number of entries for the U.S. Open, the governing body shared that an entry record has also been broken on the women's side for the second straight year.
A total of 1,420 applications were accepted for the 2013 U.S. Women's Open, which will take place June 27-30 at Sebonack Golf Club in Southampton, N.Y. The total surpasses the 1,364 entries for last year's event, which set a record at the time, and marks the 10th consecutive year that participants exceeded 1,000.
In order to apply, players were required to be either professional or in possession of a USGA handicap index of 4.4 or better. When registration opened in March, 14-year-old Sierra Brooks of Orlando, Fla. was the first to submit her application, while 18-year-old Maria Fernanda Villegas was the last entry accepted before the deadline. Villegas, an amateur from Chula Vista, Calif., submitted her application just six minutes before registration closed.
Qualification begins May 7 and will conclude May 30, with 20 different venues each hosting 36-hole events. Players will hope to follow in the footsteps of Birdie Kim, the last player to win the U.S. Women's Open after advancing through qualification when she claimed the trophy at Cherry Hills in 2005.
A total of 85 players are already exempt into the final field, including defending champion Na Yeon Choi and Juli Inkster, a two-time winner of the event who has been granted a special exemption by the USGA. Players can still earn a spot in the field by winning one of the six remaining LPGA events leading up to Sebonack, or by cracking the top 25 of the Rolex Women's World Golf Rankings as of June 24.