Carolinas Golf Magazine

Winter 2018

golf, CGA, carolinas, junior, equipment, sport, PGA, LPGA, association, magazine

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Her list of remarkable amateur achievements go back to her junior days, but that chapter of her life is now officially over. After an incredible (but unsurprising) perform- ance at this year's Inaugural LPGA Q-Series held at Pinehurst Resort, Stephenson earned her LPGA tour card and will begin the next chapter as a professional golfer. Stephenson earned her exemption into the Q- Series by being one of the top five collegiate players in the country. She took full advantage of the oppor- tunity, finishing four-under-par for the 144-hole marathon to finish the Q-Series tied for eighth place. Amateur competitors earning LPGA status may defer acceptance until July 1, but Stephenson decided that she would turn pro immediately and follow her dreams to the tour. Only days before Stephenson teed it up for her last rounds as an amateur, she came by the Carolinas Golf Hall of History in Southern Pines to see our display showcasing her golf bag and other items from the 2018 Curtis Cup. In this Q&A, Stephenson talks about what it took to get to this point in her golf career and where she's going next. For a full video interview with Lauren, visit CarolinasGolf.org. (Editor' Questions and answers have been slightly edited for readability.) Jackson Sveen: When did you start playing? Lauren Stephenson: My dad got me started when I was really young; probably four or five. I would just go out and hit with him while he was playing. He would drop me off at 150 yards and say, "Keep hitting until you get to the green." I never really took it that seriously until my great- grandpa saw me hit and said, "She has a really good natural swing. Let's try to get her some lessons." That's kind of how it all happened. 24 | | W I N T E R 2 0 1 8 P L AY E R P RO F I L E One Carolinas Am's Path to the LPGA Tour Q&A with Lexington, S.C. Native, Lauren Stephenson BY JACKSON SVEEN L auren Stephenson is hands down one of the best amateur golfers, male or female, to come out of the Carolinas. In 2018, she was named the Golfweek Player of the Year, represented the U.S. on the Curtis Cup and Palmer Cup teams and won the Golfstat Cup as the nation's leading scorer with a 69.76 average for the season. USGA

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