44th California Senior Women's Amateur Championship
October 3-5, 2021, Santa Maria CC
The California Senior Women’s Amateur Championship is designed for the top female amateur golfers, age 50 and above, to compete against each other for the state’s senior championship. The event is contested over 54 holes. Beginning in 2019, the event will be administered by the NCGA and SCGA in partnership with the CWAC Committee. The event will be conducted in Southern California for the first time in 2020 and will rotate between NorCal and SoCal venues moving forward.
Kurata Goes Wire-To-Wire to Capture Cal Senior Women's Am
Pasadena resident Kathy Kurata came up north, took on a challenging course and tough field, and walked away a California Amateur champion.
Kurata fired a final-round 4-over 76 Wednesday at San Jose Country Club to come in at 9-over 225, polishing off what became a wire-to-wire win at the California Senior Women’s Amateur Championship. Along with simply being one of the biggest wins of her career, the victory sewed up Senior Women’s Player of the Year honors for the Mission Hills member. Kurata was also the SCGA Senior Women’s Player of the Year in 2018 and 2020.
“This is so huge because it’s a California Amateur event. It’s both the North and South,” said Kurata, who took early control of the championship thanks to an opening-round 73. “This is always such a great event. And to compete and win against this caliber of players. It’s very special.”
In winning, Kurata had to fend off among others defending champion Lara Tennant. A part-time Pebble Beach resident and the three-time defending champion of the U.S. Senior Women’s Amateur, Tennant had entered the final round only four shots behind Kurata. Tennant never get going, however, opening with four bogeys in her first five holes en route to a final round 75 that left her three shots behind the winner. Third place went to Itsuko Moridaira at 236 following a card-off with NCGA Hall of Famer Sally Krueger.
“The whole day I just didn’t play very well,” said Tennant, who was aiming to be the first repeat winner since Corey Weworski in 2016-17. “Kathy was very consistent every day. She played very well.”
Kurata’s steadiness showed. The 61-year-old administrator for her husband’s optometry practice never scored higher than a bogey over her 54 holes.
“Lara and I are good friends. We love the competition,” Kurata said. “Watching her beautiful game—it helps me.”
Entering the championship, Kurata admittedly hadn’t been playing that well. On Friday before the championship began, she took up a friend’s suggestion and tried a new putter. On Saturday, she played a practice round with the new putter. It never left her bag.
“The greens were very challenging, so it helped me,” Kurata said. “You really had to concentrate out there.”
In the Super Senior Championship (ages 65-plus), Anna Schultz of Heath, TX shot a final round 84 to come in with a three-day total of 32-over 248, good enough for a five-shot win over runner-up Sandy Woodruff of Santa Cruz. Woodruff had a final round 85. Third place in the Super Senior went to NCGA Hall of Famer Marianne Towersey, who came in at 257 after an 85.