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Tennessee Women's Amateur Championship

Event History


The organization of the Women's Tennessee Golf Association (WTGA) was accomplished during an invitational tournament at Memphis Country Club in 1916.  This tournament was later recognized as the Women's State Amateur Championship.


The playing of this state tournament, won the first year by Marguerite Gaut, was the result of a challenge made several years earlier by Frank O. Watts, the president of First National Bank in Nashville.  Watts told Edyth Duffield, an active member at Memphis Country Club, that he would donate a trophy for the winner of the first women's Tennessee championship.  When the tournament was started in 1916, Watts made good on his offer.  Duffield, for her tremendous effort in organizing the event and starting the WTGA, was elected the first president and served the association for four years.


In the first event, Gaut defeated Mrs. Frank M. Guthrie, 5 and 4, to become the first Women's State Amateur Champion.  Gaut was Tennessee's first great women's champion, and during her career, won six amateur titles, four Southern Women's Amateurs, and one Western Amateur.  Following her fifth victory in 1937 Tennessee Women's Amateur, Gaut was elected honorary president of the WTGA for life.


From 1916 to 1936, the Women's State Amateur was played only eight times.  It was not played from 1917 to 1919 because of World War I, and it was not played from 1923-1927 and 1932-1936.  In 1937, WTGA President Peggy Probasco of Chattanooga was responsible for reviving the tournament which has been played every year with the exception of 1942-1945 due to World War II.  The tournament's current trophy was given in 1937 to the WTGA by Peggy's husband, Scott L. Probasco, Sr. and bears his name.


The Tennessee Women's Amateur Championship is the crown jewel of the women's state events and is one of 17 state championships run by the TGA.


Event Records


Multiple Winners:

Betty Probasco (8)--1954, 1955, 1964, 1965, 1973, 1980, 1981, 1986

Judy Eller Street (7)--1956, 1957, 1958, 1959, 1960, 1962, 1966

Marguerite Gaut (6)--1916, 1921, 1922, 1930, 1937, 1938

Margaret Gunther Lee (6)--1941, 1946, 1947, 1948, 1949, 1963

Ann Baker Furrow (5)--1961, 1967, 1968, 1978, 1979

Margarite Solomon (4)--1929, 1931, 1939, 1940

Connie Day (4)--1971, 1972, 1976, 1977

Marnie Polk (3)--1951, 1952, 1953

Paula Carter (3)--1997, 2000, 2001

Shelley K. Anderson (3)--1998, 1999, 2006

Margaret Harmon (2)--1969, 1970

Nancy Holmes (2)--1974, 1975

Shannon Radford (2)--1982, 1988

Lissa Bradford (2)--1983, 1985

Chris Darci (2)--1989, 1990

Katie Gallina (2)--1995, 1996

Sarah Jacobs (2)--2002, 2003

Rachel Smith (2)--2004, 2005

Kendall Martindale (2)--2009, 2011


Tournament Records:

Most championships: 8, Betty Probasco in 1954, 1955, 1964, 1965, 1973, 1980, 1981, 1986

Most consecutive championships: 5, Judy Eller Street in 1956, 1957, 1958, 1959, 1960

Most times in finals: 13, Betty Probasco in 1954, 1955, 1964, 1965, 1966, 1970, 1971, 1973, 1977, 1980, 1981, 1984, 1986

Most runner-up finishes: 6, Nancy Holmes in 1960, 1961, 1963, 1972, 1976, 1979

Most times medalist: 10, Betty Probasco in 1954, 1958, 1962, 1964, 1971, 1975, 1977, 1979, 1980, 1994

Lowest medalist score: 65 (-6), Rachel Smith in 2005 at Old Hickory Country Club

Lowest medalist score for 36-holes: 145 (+1), Kendall Martdinale in 2013 at Vanderbilt Legends Club and Courtney Wood Chandler in 2013 at Vanderbilt Legends Club

Largest margin of victory in 18-hole championship match: 7 and 6, Shannon Radford defeated Sally Wagner in 1988 at Link Hills and Rachel Bates defeated Shelley Kinder in 1993 at Stonehenge Golf Club

Largest margin of victory in 36-hole championship match: 10 and 9, Margarite Solomon defeated Anna Kirkpatrick in 1929 at Belle Meade Country Club

Longest 18-hole championship match: 20th hole, Katie Gallina defeated Rachel Probasco in 1966 at Jackson Country Club

Longest span, first to last championship: 32 years, Betty Probasco from 1954 to 1986

Longest span between championships: 14 years, Margaret Gunther Lee from 1949 to 1963

Youngest player to win championship: Judy Eller Street (15 years, 8 months, 22 days) in 1956 at Jackson Country Club, Ann Baker (16 years, 22 days) in 1961 at Jackson Country Club, Kendall Martindale (16 years, 5 months, 18 days) in 2009 at Memphis Country Club

Oldest player to win championship: Betty Probasco (56 years, 7 months, 25 days) in 1986 at Hillwood Country Club

Most times host club of championship: 10, Jackson Country Club in 1941, 1949, 1956, 1961, 1966, 1971, 1977, 1983, 1995, 2001

Largest entry: 179, The Honors Course in 2008


Records courtesy of Gene Pearce from The Tennessee Golf Almanac & Record Book for 2014








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