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Symetra Tour: Amateur Olivia Mehaffey leads by 2 after 36 holes in Arizona


Three amateurs were granted sponsor exemptions to the Symetra Tour season opener.

That decision is proving to be a smart one, as all three made the cut, two of them are sitting inside the top ten and one of them is the outright leader after 36 holes at the Carlisle Arizona Women’s Golf Classic.

Arizona State senior Olivia Mehaffey has posted rounds of 69-64 and holds the solo lead by two strokes at 11 under heading to the weekend at Longbow Golf Club in Mesa. She had nine birdies and one bogey on Friday to vault to the top of the leaderboard. Her 64 is the best score of the week so far.

Mehaffey is trying to match former Sun Devil Phil Mickelson with a victory in a professional event while still in college at ASU.

Maybe it’s not too surprising. Last Sunday, she posted a final-round 62 in the Clover Cup at Longbow, helping her Sun Devils win their third college tournament in four outings in the spring season. An extra challenge this week: Longbow played at 6,184 yards for the Clover Cup and is measuring 6,439 yards for the Symetra event.

Her ASU teammate, Ashley Menne, shot a 67 on Friday, nine shots better than her first-round 76, which has moved her into a tie for 31st at 1 under.

Rose Zhang, the top-ranked amateur in the world, is also in contention after shooting 70-69 in her first two rounds, putting her in a tie for 9th at 5 under.

Longbow Golf Course in Mesa, Arizona. Photo by Golfweek

Laurie Coughlin, Ruixin Liu and Celine Herbin are tied for second at 10 under. Allie White is in 5th at 8 under, while Fatima Fernandez Cano is at a shot back at 7 under. Defending tournament champ Sarah White shot 73-74 and missed the cut.

SCORES: Carlisle Arizona Women’s Golf Classic

An amateur won a Symetra Tour event on the same course in 2015. Hannah O’Sullivan won the Gateway Classic at age 16, the youngest player to win on the circuit.

The Carlisle event is the first on the Symetra Tour’s 2021 schedule and features one of the bigger purses, $200,000, with $30,000 going to the winner.

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