By Alex Podlogar
A day ago, Allisen Corpuz won the U.S. Women’s Open.
In what way, you may ask, is that an appropriate lead for a preview story about the 121st Women’s North & South Amateur?
Glad you asked.
In 2020, Corpuz finished as the North & South Runner-Up to champion Rachel Kuehn. A year later, she advanced to the semifinals. And yes, now two years after not winning the Women’s North & South, Corpuz is the U.S. Women’s Open Championship.
That, friends, is how good the field of the Women’s North & South Amateur every year.
Just a few years before winning the U.S. Women's Open at Pebble Beach, Allisen Corpuz was a medalist, runner-up and semifinalist at the Women's North & South Amateur.
And so, that is also our new and refreshed way of writing our typical disclaimer that given these deep fields year after year, that anyone good enough to qualify is certainly capable of adding their own chapter to Pinehurst’s ongoing history book. After all, 14 of the last 20 North & South champions have gone on to appear on the LPGA Tour, and four of them – Brittany Lang, Morgan Pressel, Yani Tseng and Danielle Kang – have won major championships in that same span (2015 North & South winner Bailey Tardy nearly became the fifth last week at Pebble Beach.)
So now, with that out of the way, here is a look at a few contenders and familiar names who might make a run as the championship begins on Tuesday morning.
Megan Schofill returns to the North & South after finishing as the runner-up a year ago.
SO CLOSE. OH, SO CLOSE
ANNA MORGAN – So, by virtue of the Allien Corpuz Transitive Property – we know, you were told there would be no math – that means that Anna Morgan may soon win a major championship. (It’s science.) We’re kidding, but Morgan, the Southern Conference Player of the Year at Furman, was a semifinalist a year ago and was the North & South runner-up to Gina Kim in 2021. Morgan always tends to play well in this area – she qualified at Mid Pines for the U.S. Women’s Open at Pine Needles – and won twice again this college season. She’s coming into the event a week after finishing fourth in the Carolinas Women’s Amateur.
MEGAN SCHOFILL – The Auburn graduate student has continued her torrid play following her runner-up finish to Emilia Migliaccio in the North & South a year ago. She too could qualify for the Allisen Corpuz Transitive Property, having finished as a North & South semifinalist in 2021, where she lost to Morgan. The two-time All-American won once this college season, finished second in the SEC Championship and tied for 14th at the Augusta National Women’s Amateur. She has played in the last three Palmer Cups and all four ANWAs.
Amanda Sambach had a huge season with Virginia and comes into the North & South as perhaps the top player.s
SO MANY GOOD PLAYERS…
AMANDA SAMBACH – How’s this for some North & South symmetry? Last year Schofill defeated Sambach 3&2 in the semifinals. This week, Sambach is ranked 11th in Golfweek’s Women’s College rankings, while Schofill is 13th. In the World Amateur Golf Ranking, Schofill is 20th and Sambach is 21st. Who also finished tied for 14th at ANWA? Yep, Sambach. But Sambach, whose family makes Pinehurst home, had a huge 2022-23 season at Virginia, winning three times, including the ACC Championship and the NCAA Westfield Regional. Her three wins this season set a Virginia school record, and Sambach was a finalist for the Annika Award, given annually to the best Division-1 female golfer in the country.
JUSTICE BOSIO – The Australian made a run to the quarterfinals last year and has finished as the runner-up in each of the last two Australian Women’s Amateurs. Bosio also reached the quarterfinals last year in the U.S. Girls’ Junior and recorded top-20 finishes in the Australian Women’s Classic Bonville, Vic Open, Women’s Australian Open and Women’s Amateur Asia-Pacific.
PHOEBE BRINKER – The Duke junior has starred on the ACC level, winning the conference championship in 2022 before finishing as the runner-up to Sambach this year. Her six top-10 finishes this season led the Blue Devils, with four straight coming heading into the NCAA Championship.
Canadian Brooke Rivers holds the Putter Boy trophy after winning the 43rd Girls’ North & South Junior in 2021.
MORE NAMES TO WATCH
Florida junior Maisie Filler notched three top-3 finishes this season…Arizona State junior Grace Summerhays had a standout sophomore season and has seven top-10 finishes since the 2022 NCAA Regional…Brooke Rivers won the 2021 Girls North & South Junior and made match play in the Women’s North & South later that summer…A year after reaching the North & South quarterfinals and appearing in the 2022 U.S. Women’s Open at Pine Needles, South Florida’s Melanie Green added eight top-10 finishes this season, with six of those 6th or better…Former Big East Champion and Duke transfer Emma McMyler won four times last season for Xavier.
The Women’s North & South Amateur format is a tad different than the men’s a couple of weeks ago. Instead of the filed being split between Pinehurst No. 4 and Pinehurst No. 2, the full field will play Tuesday’s first round of stroke play on No. 4, and then the second round Wednesday, the full field will play No. 2.
The field will then be cut to the top 32 seeded players for match play, which will be contested on No. 2. The semifinals and championship match are scheduled for Saturday.