Rogowicz "excited" to make LPGA field
Galloway Township, NJ---
There were time when Paul Rogowicz would tell his young daughter Jackie stories filled with fantasy and suspense.
The proud dad never thought of the one where his little girl would qualify for the LPGA ShopRite Classic.
"Nope, that wasn't one of the stories," said the area golf Hall of Famer. "I'm so proud of her."
Jackie Rogowicz, a rising Penn State University senior, played in the Pre-Qualifier for the ShopRite Sunday and bested the competition on a windswept day with an 80. That got her into the final qualifier Monday to make the field. A sparkling 2-under-par 69 made her the 144th player in the 144-player event.
"Same player, same game, different conditions," explained Rogowicz, who like her dad plays out of Yardley Country Club. "On Sunday, well, no way I thought I'd advance. It was so tough out there. My focus was getting through the pre-qualifier. But I did, then Monday I played strong."
And there she was, a placard behinder, stroking practice shots on the same range as Brooke Henderson, Amy Olsen and Chelia Choi. She was honing her swing for an early starting time (7:37 a.m.) playing alongside former US Women's Open Champion Brittany Lang and Annie Park.
The ShopRite LPGA is a 54-hole event held at Stockton Seaview Golf and Tennis Resort in Galloway Township near Atlantic City. Its Bay Course, designed by Donald Ross, isn't long in length but features tiny greens, tall fescue and can be blasted by mighty winds.
"Accuracy is always important, but when the winds are blowing they can create all kinds of havoc," said LPGA start Lydia Ko.
Those winds can be demanding and bring out the best in a player...or the worst.
Rogowicz has a simple game plan. Play her game, make some putts, and let what happens, well, happen.
"This is a great opportunity and I am very excited to be here."
And have some fun!
CHIP SHOTS: Defending champion In Kyung Kim is happy to be back at Seaview, where her victory over Anna Nordqvist kick=started a summer that saw her win three times, including a major championship. "I like this place, but I don't like those winds too much."...After a lengthy win drought Lydia Ko is nearing where she wants to me. "The win in California was great," said the 21-year-old. "It had been a while since I raised a trophy...Neshaminy's Brittany Benvenuto is entered, playing her fourth LPGA Tour event with a 1:54 starting time while playing with Nannette Hill and Maude Aimee Leblanc.