The road to the LPGA comes to Hamilton County for the first time in Symetra Tour history with some notable local players vying for their big move at the My Marsh Classic, June 1-3 at The Hawthorns Golf & Country Club in Fishers, Indiana.
Fishers native Brittany Kelly is familiar with The Hawthorns because it’s where Kelly qualified for her first U.S. Girls Junior in high school, and as runner up at the MAC championships while playing for Ball State. Kelly’s father, Ken Kelly, a teacher at Carmel Middle School and coach of Carmel High School girl’s golf team is her caddy. Kelly’s goal is to place in the top ten in the My Marsh Classic. Kelly says, “Dad has helped me win tournaments before. He can help me win this tournament.”
Aimee Neff of Carmel is in her second season with the Symetra Tour. Highlights for Neff include Brebeuf’s 2007 the state championship her senior year, and Michigan State’s 2011 Big Ten championship her senior year there. Neff says since many LPGA players begin on the Symetra Tour she’s looking forward to seeing what doors open up this year. Neff says she’s excited about the outreach work that’s part of My Marsh Classic Symetra including a visit to the Muscular Dystrophy Clinic at Riley Hospital for Children and Meals On Wheels deliveries in Fishers.
18-year-old Paige Crafton has been selected as the local amateur player for My Marsh Classic. Crafton will be a 2012 graduate of Bishop Chatard High School who’s been golfing since her father introduced her to the sport at age 3. She’s attending the University of Evansville on a golf scholarship this fall and while she’s played in opens before, this is a whole new level for her. Crafton appreciates the self-reliance of the game. “It’s all on you; you depend on yourself,” Crafton says.
This is a big opportunity for these young athletes in a sport that is struggling right now. I wish all these athletes the best of luck at The Hawthorns this summer. By the way, The Hawthorns is one of my favorite golf courses in the city. It is long and I can see them giving these players some tough pin locations. It won’t be easy. These girls are truly on the road to the LPGA.