Hui Chong Dofflemyer of Belvidere is one of the top female golfers in the Stateline. She has won the Greater Rockford Women’s Golf Classic twice and in 2014 she was the runnerup in the Illinois Women’s State Amateur. This week though will be the highlight of her golfing career.
Dofflemyer is at the Pine Needles Lodge and Golf Club in Southern Pines, North Carolina. She’ll be competing in the U.S. Women’s Senior Open. She qualified by finishing second in a sectional qualifier last month at the Medinah Country Club.
She spent the last two days getting to know the Pine Needles course layout in a pair of practice rounds. She told me over the phone the course is what you would expect from a championship course.
“Their greens, there’s a lot of slopes and they’re big, and everything drops,” said Dofflemyer.
The tournament is open to pro and amateur golfers who are age 50 and older and whose Handicap Index does not exceed 7.4. Dofflemyer just turned 50 this year.
Dofflemyer is one of the amateurs in the field of 120 golfers. The majority of the field is like a living Hall of Fame of women’s golf. There’s 8-time USGA Champion Joanne Carner, 3-time U.S. Women’s open winner Hollis Stacy, 5-time USGA Champion Juli Inkster, Betsy King a winner of six majors, and the great Laura Davies. She won the first U.S. Women’s Senior Open last year.
“It’s weird because I’ve seen them on TV and (now) I’m watching in person,” said Dofflemyer.
She never imagined she would ever get to compete against such legendary golfers.
“No, no, no. I didn’t even think about it. Then I was playing with the oldest ladies yesterday (Tuesday) and today (Wednesday). They were hitting the ball miles and they were hitting straight. I was playing with all different legends I guess.”
Dofflemyer, as of Wednesday evening wasn’t nervous.
“Right now I’m not but probably tomorrow morning on the first tee box I will be very nervous.”
So wha is her approach this week, to enjoy the tournament or will the competitor in her come out.?
“I hope the competitor (comes out), but when I go out there I just want to enjoy it,” said Dofflemyer.
Dofflemyer’s sister who lives in North Carolina will be her caddie. The low 50 scorers after the first two rounds Thursday and Friday will make the cut for Saturday and Sunday. Those final two rounds will be televised on FoxSports1.