Keating qualifies for US Women’s Open

Victorian Open champion Stacey Keating has qualified for next month’s US Women’s Open at Sebonack Golf Club in Southampton, New York.

Keating took time out from competing on the Ladies European Tour recently to head for Oak Valley Golf Club in Beaumont, California, where she shot a two-round total of 144 to finish third behind leading amateurs UCLA senior Tiffany Lua and USC freshman Gabriella Then in the sectional qualifier.

Stacey Keating Stacey Keating

Keating finished five shots adrift of that pair after joining a record number of entries for the 2013 championship.

Amazingly, 1420 entries surpassed the 1364 entries accepted for the 2012 event at Blackwolf Run in Kohler, Wisconsin.

It was also the 10th consecutive year the number of entries for the US Women’s Open exceeded 1000.

The 2001 and 2001 champion Karrie Webb is among 84 golfers exempt from sectional qualifying alongside defending champion Na Yeon Choi and other fully-exempt champions Paula Creamer (2010), Eun-Hee Ji (2009), Cristie Kerr (2007), Birdie Kim (2005), Se Ri Pak (1998), Inbee Park (2008) and So Yeon Ryu (2011).

Other Australians already exempt into the second women’s major championship of the year are Katherine Hull-Kirk, Sarah-Jane Smith and Lindsay Wright.

This year’s Open will be played from June 27-30.