MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. – Furman's Alice Chen and Taylor Totland teamed up to win the third U.S. Women's Amateur Four-Ball Championship on Wednesday at the par-72, 6,298-yard Robert Trent Jones Sr. course at The Dunes Golf & Beach Club in Myrtle Beach, S.C.
Chen, a rising senior from Princeton, N.J., and Totland, a recent graduate who hails from Tinton Falls, N.J., squared off against Georgia's Sammi Lee and Mary Ellen Shuman, sister of former Furman men's golfer Billy Shuman, in the championship.
The Paladin duo birdied the first two holes and added a birdie on No. 5 to go 3-up, before the Georgia team rallied with birdies on two out of three holes from No. 4 to No. 6 to cut the deficit to two. Chen and Totland again took a 3-up lead after a Georgia bogey on No. 8. Totland holed out for birdie from a greenside bunker on No. 11, then Chen made an 18-foot birdie putt on No. 12 to extend the margin to 4-up. Both teams parred No. 13 and No. 14 before Chen rolled in a 6-footer for birdie on No. 15 to clinch the championship, 4-and-3.
“Our game plan was to just take it one shot at a time,” said Chen. “I think this experience has really taught me to love match play. It's just been so much fun to be able to be aggressive and have someone have your back at the same time, and we do a really good job of that. So we're just covering each other really well, and it's definitely been such a team effort with a lot of pars, a lot of birdies.”
Chen and Totland, who was playing in her final amateur event, were one of three co-medalist pairs who finished the two rounds of stroke play at a 12-under 132 on Sunday, tying the Women's Four-Ball stroke-play record, to advance to match play.
Chen and Totland join former Furman golfers Betsy King, Beth Daniel and Todd White as USGA champions.
The U.S. Women's Amateur Four-Ball is one of 13 annual national championships conducted by the United States Golf Association, 10 of which are strictly for amateurs. The championship is open to sides of female amateur golfers, each of whom has a Handicap Index® not exceeding 14.4. It consists of two 18-hole rounds of stroke play, after which the field is cut to the low 32 sides for match play.