LSU junior golfers Ingrid Lindblad and Latanna Stone will be part of the 72-player field that begins lay Wednesday in the third Augusta National Women’s Amateur tournament that begins at the Champions Retreat in Augusta, Georgia.
For Lindblad it will be her second appearance in the prestigious event. Lindblad participated in 2021 and shot a 54-hole total of 2-over 218 to finish one shot out of the playoff that was eventually won by 17-year-old Tsubasa Kajitani of Japan.
As in past years, the tournament will feature 36-holes of stroke play at Champions Retreat on Wednesday and Thursday before the field is cut ot 30 golfers (ties broken) that will play Saturday on the famed Augusta National links to determine the title. All 72 golfers will play a practice round on Friday at Augusta National.
“I’m super excited to be back again,” said Lindblad, who is coming off three tournament wins in the spring at LSU, including this past Sunday at the Clemson Invitational. “I feel like last year was a great experience and now I know a lot more about the course and the events so I’m ready for some revenge.”
“I feel like I worked hard and it certainly has paid off,” Stone said of her first invite. “The momentum of my two wins during the (semester) break has helped my confidence in my game.”
Stone is coming off a T7 over the weekend at Clemson and has two top 10s and two other top-19 finishes in the spring.
Lindblad will be off in Group 12 on Wednesday at 8:30 a.m. CT with Megha Ganne of Homdel, New Jersey and Rachel Kuehn of Asheville, North Carolina. The 21-year-old Lindblad is No. 2 in the World Amateur Golf Rankings and on the ANNIKA Spring Watch List. Ganne is 18 and No. 16 in the WAGR. Kuehn (age 20), a junior at Wake Forest, is No. 9 in the WAGR.
All three are making their second appearance in the tournament.
Stone will begin play some 36 minutes later in an All-Southeastern Conference grouping with 18-year-old Hannah Darling of Scotland who plays for South Carolina and Italy’s Benedetta Moresco from the University of Alabama. It is the first ANWA appearance for Stone and Darling and Moresco’s second. Stone is No. 41 in the WAGR.
The first 36 holes are contested over the Island and Bluff nines at Championship Retreat and Lindblad has seen the differences of one nine designed by the late Arnold Palmer and the second nine designed by Jack Nicklaus.
“The first nine is pretty flat but the back nine is very hilly,” said Lindblad. “You need to be precise with tee shots, lay ups and shots into the greens to make birdies.”
Lindblad shot 73-70 on the opening two rounds to easily advance to the final round a year ago at Augusta National. It took a 6-over score of 150 to make it into the top 30 a year ago.
One thing Lindblad remembers about her two days at Augusta National is how different it was actually being on course.
“I didn’t think it was THAT hilly,” she emphasized. “I think the elevation from tee to green on 10 is 120 feet. Before I played the course, I had obviously only seen it on TV so in real life it was very different.”
And, it doesn’t hurt that Stone has a teammate who has been there before to show her the ropes.
“To be able to go with my teammate is such a cool experience,” said Stone, a Florida native. “We got to road trip together on the way to Augusta. She has helped with my schedule a bit since this is all new to me. I am looking forward to cherishing the memories I make this week and especially being a part of this event.”
The Golf Channel will have coverage after the rounds on Wednesday and Thursday on its Golf Central show. ANWAgolf.com will air a live “Making The Cut” show on Thursday focusing on the bubble players fighting for a spot in the final round. That broadcast will also stream live on Twitter, Facebook and YouTube.
Live coverage of the final round Saturday will be on NBC Sports beginning at 11 a.m. CT.