Strong Field at Women's International Four-Ball
The historical Women's International Four-Ball Championship is again being held at the premiere golf and polo club in Wellington, Florida. The Wanderers Club will host forty-eight teams from around the world. Some of the top women amateurs will compete for the coveted Women's International Four-Ball Championship title, February 17-18. The format of the championship will be 36 holes of four-ball stroke play, commonly known as a two-person, best-ball.
Defending champions, Tara Connelly of Palm Beach Gardens, and Meghan Stasi of Oakland Park, have once again teamed up for the Championship. Stasi is a four-time US Women’s Mid-Amateur champion and a member of the victorious 2008 Curtis Cup Team. She also has had success at the International Four-Ball, winning three times, first in 2009 with Dawn Woodard, then in 2010 with Donna Mummert, and last year with current partner Tara Connelly. Stasi's 2014 season is off to a great start, winning the 58th Harder Hall Invitational in January and placing in the top 10 at the Dixie Women's Amateur.
Another extremely notable player to watch is Ellen Port of St. Louis, Missouri. Port’s resume is quite extensive, including four US Women’s Mid-Amateur titles and two US Women’s Senior Amateur titles. Also, Port is currently the captain of the 2014 USA Curtis Cup team. The 38th Curtis Cup Match will be conducted in Port's hometown at St. Louis Country Club, June 6-8. The Curtis Cup is a biennial competition between female amateur teams from the USA, Great Britain and Ireland. Port herself was a member of the 1994 and 1996 USA Curtis Cup Teams. Port won the 1995, 1996, 2000 and 2011 U.S. Women's Mid-Amateurs along with the 2012 and 2013 USGA Senior Women's Amateur. In addition to her USGA titles, Port holds the record for most Missouri Women's Amateur champion titles, winning the championship eight times, and she is also a 12-time St. Louis Metropolitan champion. Port was also recently named Global Golf Post's Women's Amateur Player of the Year.
Three-time USGA Senior Women's Amateur champion, Diane Lang of Weston, will also be amongst the talented field, playing with close friend and forever four-ball partner and Florida Senior Player-of-the-Year, Mary Jane Hiestand of Naples. Lang captured the International Four-Ball title in 2006 with partner Monica VonGlahn. Lang and Hiestand will also be partnering up in attempts to qualify for the Inaugural USGA Women's Amateur Four-Ball that will be conducted in 2015 at Bandon Dunes. Taffy Brower, of Boynton Beach, won the International Four-Ball title in 2011 and has also had many successful finishes in USGA championships as well as four Florida Women’s Amateur titles. Brower will be returning to the field once again, competing with partner Kathleen Colliflower.
As the fourth championship in the Orange Blossom Tour that includes the Harder Hall Women's Invitational, the South Atlantic Amateur (SALLY), and the Ione D. Jones/Doherty Championship, the Women’s International Four-Ball carries a tremendous amount of history and prestige. First conducted in 1945 by the Jaycees of Hollywood, Florida, the early championships included the names of Babe Zaharias, Louise Suggs, Peggy Kirk-Bell, and other notables.
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