Candace Schepperle Slated To Play In LPGA's State Farm Classic This Week
June 3, 2009
AUBURN - Coming off an All-America season in which she finished in the top 10 of every collegiate tournament she competed in, Auburn junior Candace Schepperle is set to take on some of golf's best this week as she competes in the LPGA's State Farm Classic.
Now in its 34th year of existence, the State Farm Classic is a 72-hole tournament that will take place at the Panther Creek Country Club in Springfield, Ill. The par-72 course will play at 6,746 yards for the four-day tournament.
Schepperle, the 2009 SEC Golfer of the Year, accepted a sponsor's exemption to gain entrance to the tournament field and will be the only amateur playing among the pros this week.
"I am really excited, it is always fun to play in a professional tournament," said Schepperle. "I really like the course, I have played it a couple times already, and every time play it, like it more."
The tournament is another stop in her busy summer schedule that has so far included qualifying rounds for the U.S. Women's Open and the U.S. Women's Amateur Public Links. Even with all the travel and competition, Schepperle said she feels good about the upcoming week.
"I feel good and I am really excited about the competition this week," said Schepperle. "I love playing in this kind of atmosphere with all the great players and I am just looking forward to playing some more golf."
The tournament will be contested at Panther Creek Country Club, the tournament's home since 2007 and a course that Schepperle says is tougher than it looks.
"The golf course is deceivingly tougher than I thought," said Schepperle. "I may have underestimated in the beginning because it is a wide-open course, but when you play it, is definitely tighter because the rough is long and the greens are pretty small. It is also playing long, but it is a fair course. If you hit fairways and greens, you are good to go."
When Schepperle takes the course for Thursday's first round, she will day so against some of the top players in the world, including Paula Creamer, Laura Davies, Natalie Gulbis, Juli Inkster, Cristie Kerr, Brittany Lang, Brittany Lincicome, Michelle Wie and defending champion Ji Young Oh.
The event will be the fourth professional tournament for Schepperle to compete in. She has also competed in the 2006 Chick-fil-A Charity Championship, 2008 CN Canadian Open and the 2009 Kraft Nabisco Championship.
Earlier this season at the Kraft Nabisco Championship, Schepperle carded an even-par 72 in the first round but missed the cut in the major championship after posting a second-round 86, finishing in a tie for 87th.
At the Canadian Open, she tallied a 15-over-par 303 (71-76-77-79), making the cut and finishing in a tie for 78th. She was the only amateur to make the cut at the tournament held at the Otawa Hunt and Golf Club.
In her first professional tournament, the Chick-fil-A Charity Championship, Schepperle was again the only amateur to make the cut as she carded rounds of 75-68-76-72--291, finishing at 3-over-par to take a tie for 75th. The event took place just outside Atlanta, in Stockbridge, Ga., at the Eagles Landing Country Club.
Action in the 2009 State Farm Classic is set to begin at 7:15 a.m. CT, with the first tee times of the day. Schepperle is slated to go off in the final tee time off the No. 10 tee, taking the course with Stacy Lewis and Erica Blasberg. The pairing will match up the SEC Golfers of the Year from the past two seasons as Lewis, an Arkansas grad, won the honor in 2008.
Tournament coverage will be provided by ESPN2 from 11 a.m. - 1 p.m. CT.
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