The second annual Augusta National Women’s Amateur (ANWA) is coming up on March 31 through April 3 and four Carolinians will be teeing it up in Augusta, Georgia. The ANWA has an international field of women amateurs that compete in 54 holes of stroke play. A cut takes place after 36 holes, advancing the leading 30 players to the final round at Augusta National Golf Club. The first 36 holes are contested over two days at Champions Retreat Golf Club in Augusta, Ga. The event is invitation-only and consists of the best amateurs in the world.
The four Carolinians who have been invited to compete are Gina Kim of Durham, N.C. (Duke University), Rachel Kuehn of Asheville, N.C. (Wake Forest University), Emilia Migliaccio of Cary, N.C. (Wake Forest University) and Amanda Sambach of Davidson, N.C. (University of Virginia in 2021). Let’s take a closer look at the Carolinians we will be rooting for in Augusta this week.
Gina Kim of Durham, N.C. is a 3-time CGA champion (2012 Carolinas Junior Girls’ 15 & Under, 2013 Twin States Junior Girls’, 2016 Vicki DiSantis Junior Girls’), 2-time North Carolina Junior Girls’ Player of the Year (2014, 2016), and the 2019 Carolinas Women’s Player of the Year. Kim is probably best-known for her T-12 finish in the U.S. Women’s Open Championship in 2019 where an opening 66 left her one stroke off the first-round lead. Her 66 tied the record mark for low-18 by an amateur at the championship. She finished as the low amateur that year and her score of 283 at the championship tied for second lowest ever by an amateur at the U.S. Women’s Open. Kim, currently a junior at Duke University, helped lead the Blue Devils to the seventh NCAA title in program history in 2018-19, going 2-1 in match play in the postseason. This is Kim’s second time competing at Augusta, after missing the cut in 2019.
Rachel Kuehn of Asheville, N.C., is a 3-time CGA champion (2017 Carolinas Women’s Amateur, 2018 Vicki DiSantis Junior Girls’, 2020 Carolinas Women’s Four-Ball), the 2017 North Carolina Junior Girls’ Player of the Year and the reigning 2020 Carolinas Women’s Player of the Year. Kuehn may argue that she is a two-time Carolinas Women’s Amateur champion since her mother, Brenda Corrie Kuehn, won the 2001 Carolinas Women’s Amateur while pregnant with Rachel. Kuehn claimed consecutive victories in 2020 at the North & South Women’s Amateur and the Ladies’ National Golf Association Amateur last July. Kuehn is currently a sophomore at Wake Forest University and had an impressive win in her first season, claiming the ANNIKA Intercollegiate at 13-under par. She was selected to the U.S. Arnold Palmer Cup team and was named a WGCA first-team All-American. Kuehn will compete for the first time in Augusta this year.
Emilia Migliaccio of Cary, N.C. will compete for a second time at Augusta this year. She is a senior at Wake Forest University and has won multiple times in her college career, including three wins in the 2018-19 season and a win at the Darius Rucker Intercollegiate in 2020 before the 2019-20 season was canceled. Migliaccio was a quarterfinalist at both the North & South Women’s Amateur and the U.S. Women’s Amateur in the summer of 2020. She finished T-4 at the Symetra Tour’s Carolina Golf Classic, and appeared in both the LPGA ANA Inspiration and the U.S. Women’s Open last year. She was named to the Arnold Palmer Cup team for a third time, becoming just the second American player to earn that honor. In CGA-related history, Migliaccio was the 2013 North Carolina Junior Girls’ Player of the Year.
Amanda Sambach of Davidson, N.C. won the North & South Junior Amateur in 2020, closing with rounds of 69-68 to win by four strokes. She concluded 2020 with three consecutive top-10 finishes, including a T-7 result at the Symetra Tour Championship and an 8th place finish at the AJGA Rolex Tournament of Champions. The future University of Virginia Cavalier was a member of the 2019 U.S. Junior Solheim Cup team, going 2-1 over three rounds of match play, and also finished T-11 at the Symetra Tour’s Symetra Classic in 2019. Sambach committed to the University of Virginia when she was in the eighth grade and will finally begin her college career later this year. She will compete for the first time at the ANWA this year.
The Augusta National Women’s Amateur Championship will be held on March 31-April 3, 2021 at Champions Retreat Golf Club and Augusta National Golf Club. You can catch these Carolinians in action online during Round 2 on April 1 at 3:30 p.m. and during the final round on April 3 on NBC Sports from 12:00 p.m. – 3:00 p.m. Visit the ANWA website for more information.
This article was compiled from the CGA archives as well as the ANWA player profiles found on the official ANWA website here.