Forsgate Country Club - Hole #3 (courtesy Forsgate C.C.)

An impressive contingent of local players highlights the field in Tuesday’s U.S. Women’s Open Sectional Qualifying round at Forsgate Country Club in Monroe Township. A total of 43 professionals and amateurs - hailing from nearby and international locales - includes four players who have won New Jersey State Golf Association championships.  The event will be held on the famed Banks Course at Forsgate, and is conducted by the NJSGA.

Among the competitors are Megha Ganne of Holmdel, who won the 2018 NJSGA Junior Girls’ Championship; Madeline Jin of Belle Mead, who won the 2017 NJSGA Women’s Public Links and the 2016 Junior Girls’; Christine Shao of Green Brook, who won the 2017 Junior Girls’, and Ami Gianchandani of Watchung, who won the 2015 Junior Girls’.

In addition, professional Cindy Ha of Demarest is entered in the field. Ha, one of seven professionals in the qualifier, was a member of New Jersey’s victorious USGA Women’s State Team Championship with Alice Chen and Tara Fleming in 2013.

One qualifying position, plus two alternate positions, are at stake for a berth in the U.S. Women’s Open Championship, May 30-June 3, at the Country Club of Charleston in South Carolina.

The Banks Course, aptly named for its designer, Charles Banks, has hosted numerous local and national competitions throughout its rich history. The LPGA’s Coca-Cola Classic was held at Forsgate in the late 1970s, and from 2003-2011, the Forsgate Foundation Charity Golf Classic annually drew a “who’s who”  of PGA and LPGA stars. In continuation of the club’s tradition of hosting championship golf, Forsgate has generously opened its doors to the NJSGA, MGA, and USGA in recent years for high-level competition.

“Forsgate is very open to welcoming events like these for exposure to the golfing world and our membership enjoys us hosting these bigger events.  The great people at the NJSGA and the MGA are recognizing what a great course the Banks is and I think a good relationship has been growing over the last few years,” said Carolyn McKenzie Andrews, Director of Golf at Forsgate.

The historic Banks Course was designed by Charles H. Banks, one of America's celebrated "Golden Age" architects. Regarded as an architectural gem, the "traditional" design of the Banks Course features many holes inspired by some of the legendary Scottish courses, as well as Bank's signature steep and dramatic greenside bunkers. Forsgate is annually ranked by Golf Digest as "Best in State" for New Jersey.

“I personally think the exposure an event like this provides is awesome! I used to play in U.S. Open qualifiers and I know how big of an event it is so when given the chance, I was happy we could host it,” Andrews said.

Forsgate, who boasts a Golf Academy on its premises, recently added Bill Schmedes, III, as Director of Instruction.

 “Bill, along with professionals Frank Esposito, Mike Furey and Justin Rohrig are all well respected with the New Jersey PGA section. I think our golf staff and academy are a big story,” Andrews stated. “We have very affordable memberships. There are no other 36-hole properties in our area and I think that is a draw, too.”

Tuesday’s qualifier is open to spectators, and live scoring will be available through the NJSGA’s web site: www.njsga.org.

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