Golf News

She's 15 years old, and she's hitting golf's best at the US Women's Open

Asterisk Talley is the youngest player in the US Women's Open, and she is in full contention.

Getty Images

LANCASTER, Pa. – Asterisk Talley may be on his way to golf stardom, but a few things still stand in his way.

As a sophomore in high school. Or driver's license. Or prom.

Or boys.

Such is life for the youngest player on the field at this year's US Women's Open. And such was life especially on Friday afternoon at Lancaster Country Club, when the 15-year-old found himself 20 feet from the side of the 9th green (his last hole of the day) and facing something of a career first.

“Can I have your number?” The boy asked from just outside the rope line, a few feet from the giggling group of his friends.

“Ummm…” replied the star, cheeks turning bright pink.

Fortunately, he wouldn't be forced to bring grief at the US Open Friday. By the time he reached the 9th, the crowds had formed in large numbers without strings, each hoping to catch a glimpse of the young man. who could break into contention for the biggest event in women's golf. And by the time asterisk was about to be forced to give an answer to the little boy, the crowds had given him a chance: a few adults, seeking an autograph, were already shouting his name a dozen feet ahead.

So the boy didn't get the phone number, and maybe just the same. As attention turns to the weekend at Lancaster CC, Ms Talley has bigger things to worry about.

Like the US Women's Open, where she was already in a legitimate position to fight for victory.

Every time in professional golf, a player emerges with such obvious skill and cunning that his golf skills differ from what he experiences in life. (How can one play golf without being an expert in geometry?) For whatever reason, the setting for this appearance often seems to be the US Women's Open. In 2007, Lexi Thompson reset the age barrier in women's golf with her first national championship at just 12 years old. In 2013, 14-year-old Nelly Korda rolled in eagle in her first US Women's and delivered a line of the week.

At 15 years and 106 days old, Asterisk Talley is older and wiser than either of the players above at the time of their US Women's Open debut. But in two days at Lancaster Country Club, Talley stands out from his fellow veterans because, well, he beats them both. A lot.

The star – whose name comes from the Greek mother and is translated as “little star” – became a little star in two days in a fierce national competition. At the 36-hole mark, he is 1 over for the tournament. That's better than fellow pros Thompson and Korda, and at the time of this writing it was the best of all but seven golfers in the field.

“I feel like the things I expected were that I at least made a difference. That's what I wanted to do,” he said Friday. “Then if I achieved that, I wanted to get a low amateur. But I feel like that is still possible even after today's round.”

Sure, it can be done after Friday, or maybe there's an argument to be made that even the lowly amateur is selling it short. Talley looks like she's one of the best players in the women's game in Lancaster, her beansprout frame matched by a violent golf swing that carries heavy pop. He says he hits his driver 275 on a good day, and that was good enough to be longer than the rest of his teammates in his opening two rounds of the week.

But height hasn't always been an asset to his game. He has been playing golf since he was young, but his golf swing took him about a year ago. I the original his game improved a lot before then.

“I feel really calm on the golf course. People always tell me that, too. I don't feel like messing around on the golf course,” he said, looking down on himself. “I feel like when I make a bird, I'm like, well, whatever, and if I make a bogey, it's like, well, i'll catch the next hole.”

These skills proved useful in a USWO setup that did not embrace victims. While others have wilted under the intense pressure of the championship, Asterisk has clawed its way through two tough days in the sport in 2024.

“On the 8th hole, I got short of the green and I ended up rolling about eight feet past the pin, and it was like the worst putt I've had all day,” he said with a laugh. “I was like, this is only eight feet, so let's try to get it within two putt distance.

His performance has won him fans, but his honesty has helped as well. His round on Friday ended with a lengthy autograph session interrupted by an appearance on the Golf Channel. Asked later if the pressure had gotten to him, he just laughed.

“Not really. I feel like I'm used to it,” he said quietly. “But at the same time, I've never been to one of these.”

“But it's not that bad, so…”

Call it youthful ignorance or a carelessness beyond his years, but Asterisk Talley has a certain magnetism around him in the USWO – a magnetism that will surely increase once he eats it in the afternoon on national television in Saturday's big tournament. . Crowds and cameras and guys have started paying attention to a young girl with a catchy name who keeps climbing up the leaderboard, all the way to T8.

That's a number any young person would love to have.

James Colgan Editor

James Colgan is a news editor and features at GOLF, writing articles for websites and magazines. He manages Hot Mic, the GOLF media stand, and applies his camera knowledge to all product platforms. Before joining GOLF, James graduated from Syracuse University, at which time he was the recipient of a caddy (and atute looper) scholarship on Long Island, where he hails from. He can be reached at [email protected].

Source link

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button