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Hanging Tough

Cheyenne Woods overcomes wrong-ball penalty to qualify for U.S. Women's Open

May 11, 2021

Patrick Smith

Cheyenne Woods was involved in a bizarre rules situation at a U.S. Women's Open qualifier on Monday. Fortunately, this one had a happy ending.

Woods and a playing partner mistakenly hit each other's golf balls during their first round at Spring Lake (N.J.) Golf Club, resulting in a two-stroke penalty. Golfweek's Beth Ann Nichols reported the mixup happened on the par-4 seventh hole.

"Honestly, I feel like the penalty really dialed in my focus and got me a little angry,” Woods told Nichols, "where I just wanted to just play my way in."

Woods did just that, birdieing the next two holes and recording an opening 73 in the 36-hole event. She made five birdies during an afternoon 69 to earn medalist honors by five shots despite spotting the field those two penalty strokes.

Megha Ganne earned the second available spot at the qualifying site via a playoff with Leigha Devine and Savannah Vilaubi.

The 2021 U.S. Women's Open will be held June 3-6 at the Olympic Club. This will be the fifth time Woods, the niece of 15-time major champ Tiger Woods, will play in the event.

"With my conditional status on the LPGA," Woods told Nichols, "I don’t really have many opportunities to play. I’m very grateful for the ones I get."

Woods has played in just one LPGA event this year, missing the cut at last month's LOTTE Championship. The 30-year-old has one career win on the Ladies European Tour.