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August 11, 1989 - Image 52

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1989-08-11

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

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Iron Lady

Amy Alcott brought her consistent golf game
to Michigan in July for the U.S. Open

MIKE ROSENBAUM

Special to The Jewish News

A

t age 33, professional
golfer Amy Alcott
still has all the tools
to win any tournament she
enters.
She proved it by winning
the Boston Five Classic the
week after she appeared in
Michigan in the U.S. Women's
Open tournament in July.
Alcott is so well-prepared,
she even had food for some
ducks she encountered at
Lake Orion's Indianwood Golf
and Country Club during the
Women's Open.
Alcott finished seven over
par at Indianwood. Using a
compact swing, featuring a
short backswing, Alcott's con-
sistent and accurate strokes
were well-suited to the course,
which became famous — or
infamous — for its heather,
the foot-high grass which
tacked double- and triple-
bogeys onto the scorecards of
pros- who hit hooks or slices.
Alcott nearly posted her
third tournament hole-in-one
during Saturday's third
round. She hit the flag with
her tee shot on the fifth hole.
She putted for a birdie.
Alcott enjoyed the course.
"It's a beautiful place and it's
a very, very challenging golf
course," she said.
Missed birdie putts and
some three-putt greens kept
the 14-year Ladies' Profes-
sional Golf Association tour
veteran out of contention for
a second Open title. She won
the 1980 Open at Nahsville
by a whopping nine strokes.
"I played very well," Alcott
said of her Indianwood effort.
"I wish I had made a few
more putts, but it's a tough
golf course and I feel like I
played it real well."
Alcott began playing golf at
age 9. As a junior golfer, she
won 120 tournaments. She
won the 1973 USGA Junior
Girls title at age 17 and turn-
ed pro at 18.
Alcott wasted no time, win-
ning — in only her third time
out as a pro — the Orange
Blossom Classic in 1975,
which set the LPGA record
for fastest first-career win, a
mark that still stands:
The win did not surprise
Alcott.
"I never put any barriers on
what I can do. I just tried to
go out and play the best I
could. I believe that you've

Alcott enjoyed Indianwood.

just got to go out and do your
best. That's all you can do."
The 5-foot-6 resident of San-
ta Monica, Calif., won her
first major event, the Peter
Jackson Classic — now called
the du Maurier Classic — in
1979 at the Richelieu Valley
Country Club in Montreal.
Alcott has twice won the
third leg of the LPGA Grand
Slam, the Dinah Shore In-
vitational, in 1983 and 1988,
both times at the Mission
Hills Country Club in Rancho
Mirage, Calif. She won last
year with a record low score
of 274, taking home $80,000.
Winning the Mazda LPGA
Championship would make
her the second player to cap-
ture all four major events. She
was second by one stroke in
last year's LPGA, won by
Sherri Turner.
Alcott says the major tour-
naments bring out her best.
"You get a little bit more
psyched up for them. You get
a little bit more pumped up.
They're always on good golf
courses — well-maincured,
and they set 'em up tough. So
it means a little bit more
when you play well in them."
Alcott's biggst payday came
in 1986, when she and Men's
Tour veteran Bob Charles
won the Mixed Team Cham-
pionship in Jamaica, splitting
$250,000.

Alcott is a quick player who
rarely contemplates club
choice or shot strategy for
very long. Although she's all
concentration while ex-
ecuting her strokes, between
shots she smiles frequently,
acknowledges cheers and
good wishes her from her
gallery, and occasinally chats
briefly with fans while walk-
ing the course.

In 1980, Alcott won the
Vare Trophy for lowest season
scoring average, 71.51. That
same year, she was also Golf
Magazine's player of the year
and winner of the Seagram's
Seven Crowns of Sports
Award.
Alcott won at least one
LPGA tournament in each of
her first 12 years on the tour,
tying an LPGA record. She
won four tournaments in each
of 1979, '80 and '84. She was
winless in 1987, finishing
17th in the money listings,
her lowest ever. However, she
was runner-up twice, earning
a respectable $125,831 in 26
events._

In 1988, Alcott rebounded
strongly, winning the Dinah
Shore, finishing second in two
others and posting her
highest earnings ever,
$292,349, thus becoming the
LPGA's third career double-
millionaire. Through last

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