SAN MARTIN, Calif. – Anna Hack’s dream run to the U.S. Women’s Open in all likelihood ended Friday by missing the cut. The sophomore-to-be on the Kentucky women’s golf team finished at 21-over par after a difficult second round at CordeValle in San Martin, Calif.
Hack needed to make up ground Friday after an opening-round 8-over par that included eight straight pars. Hack, who qualified in May for the world’s premier golf championship during a sectional qualifier at Westwood Country Club in St. Louis, was unable to conquer the 6,784-yard layout on Friday, carding a score of 85 (13-over par).
Though play was still going on Friday, Hack will be below the cut line when the second round concludes Friday night. Golfers outside the of the top 60 (plus ties) are cut from the field after the first two rounds.
“We are so proud of Anna for what she has accomplished over the last few weeks,” Kentucky women’s golf head coach Golda Johansson Borst said. “This was a big moment for her in her career and one that she can grow from. The experience itself was invaluable and one that she will remember forever. Anna represented us well and I know she fought as hard as she could over the last two days. Golf is a tough game and this course certainly challenged all parts of her game. I am confident that Anna will bounce back from this and continue to work hard on her game to get ready for the upcoming season.”
Hack was at one point just 3-over par through the first 14 holes of the national championship on Thursday, but the back nine got the best of her. On Friday, that’s where she began her round, and the challenge proved to be just as difficult. She was 8-over par through the first seven holes before settling down and recording pars on six of her next seven holes.
The Paducah, Ky., native was one of 25 amateurs in a field that featured the world’s best golfers. Her appearance in this year’s U.S. Women’s Open marked the second straight appearance for a Kentucky Wildcat in the national championship, which is open to female amateurs and female professionals across the country and globe. Former UK women’s golfer Mallory Blackwelder (2007-09) competed in the 2015 U.S. Women’s Open.
Hack qualified for the U.S. Women’s Open in May by beating professional Ember Shculdt on the third playoff hole to clinch one of two spots from the St. Louis sectional. Thanks to five birdies in the second round, including three in the final five holes, Hack shot a second-round 69, the lowest score of the qualifier to set up the playoff.
She had to make a birdie on the second playoff hole to stay alive and then eliminated Shculdt with a par on the third playoff hole to clinch the second qualifying spot. Overall, Hack shot 4-over par in the 36-hole qualifier for second place.
The sectional qualifier in St. Louis was one of 25 U.S. Women’s Open qualifying tournaments (21 in the U.S., four internationally) for the 71st U.S. Women’s Open field. All sectional qualifiers were 36-hole, stroke play tournaments. The number of spots available at each sectional varied based on number of entries.
Hack’s latest achievement continues her rapid rise within the program. Just a freshman at the time this past year, Hack was arguably UK’s best golfer down the stretch of the season, posting two top-25 finishes in two of her last three tournaments.
Fifteen of her final 17 rounds were in the 70s, and she posted a 76.3 stroke average in the spring, the second-best mark on the team. She notched a career-best 14th-place finish at the LSU Tiger Golf Classic and ended the season with a career-low 54-hole score of 223 at the Southeastern Conference Championship, tying for 23rd.