AUSTIN CHASTAIN: Inside the ropes for a memorable week of golf

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Golf is my favorite sport, at least to play — despite the funny four-letter words that sometimes come out of my mouth. 

Over the last year, golf is becoming one of my favorite sports to cover, too.

Greenville’s Schroeder places 42nd at D2 golf finals

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Greenville freshman Sutton Schroeder was one of two local golfers, along with Belding’s Mason Anderson, to qualify for the MHSAA state finals as an individual and golfed at The Meadows at Grand Valley State University on June 10 and 11.

In a field of 117 golfers, Schroeder scored an 84 on day one and an 80 on day two, finishing with a score of 164, placing him 42nd in the field.

Winning the shootout

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Jen Kupcho wins Meijer LPGA Classic in memorable Sunday playoff

Jen Kupcho had already turned to the rules official to go to the next hole; the third playoff hole.

She heard the gasp from the massive Sunday crowd around the 18th green at Blythefield Country Club.

LPGA Tour stars remember to ‘Be yourself’ through grind of tour

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Mel Reid isn’t one to ever make excuses, that just isn’t her style. 

Coming off the course following her second round of the Meijer LPGA Classic at Blythefield Country Club, Reid wasn’t frustrated but she insisted she didn’t have the most fun out there. 

Jen Kupcho maintains lead through second round of Meijer LPGA Classic, log jam forms near top of leaderboard

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Jen Kupcho was excited to get to the second round of the Meijer LPGA Classic. The first-round leader shot a near-course record 63 on Thursday and aimed to go low again in Friday’s second round. 

The wind was up from Thursday morning’s round. It started to pick up Thursday afternoon at Blythefield Country Club, providing an additional challenge professional golfers contend with on a weekly basis. The already-strong breeze continued into Friday’s second round and was even more blustery. 

Jen Kupcho leads after memorable opening round at Meijer LPGA Classic

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Star players always draw big crowds at golf tournaments. Lexi Thompson, Brooke Henderson, Nelly and Jessica Korda are among some of the biggest names on the LPGA Tour.

And yes, they drew the big crowds during Thursday’s first round of the Meijer LPGA Classic at Blythefield Country Club. Mix in some other superstars and those crowds tend to grow even larger.

Nelly Korda returns from surgery, aims to defend championship at Meijer LPGA Classic

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Let’s go back a year. Almost to the date — that’s where Nelly Korda’s life truly began to change.

Korda, 23, was strolling around Blythefield Country Club as one of the leaders and favorites to win the 2021 Meijer LPGA Classic. She had a big lead over the rest of the star-studded field and aimed to convert that lead into her fifth LPGA Tour victory.

World’s best in our backyard

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Brooke Henderson, LPGA return to West Michigan for Meijer LPGA Classic

Brooke Henderson loves it in Michigan; it feels like a second home here for her.

Henderson is a native of Smiths Falls, Canada, a town in Eastern Ontario about nine-and-a-half hours east of Grand Rapids. Her brother-in-law is from Grand Rapids, too.

MSU’s Valery Plata excited to return to Blythefield

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Valery Plata received a phone call from her coach at Michigan State University, Stacy Slobodnik-Stoll, then LPGA Classic tournament director Cathy Cooper.

Plata soon had her plans for this week solidified, she was going to play in the Meijer LPGA Classic at Blythefield Country Club under a sponsor exemption — an experience she was fully familiar with.

Oh, so close!

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Belding senior Mason Anderson finishes third, two shots back in swan song state finals

Standing on the third fairway at The Fortress Golf Course, Belding senior Mason Anderson was pondering his next shot.

Playing his final hole of the Division 3 state golf finals, Anderson knew he needed to make a birdie to tie for the lead and have a chance at a playoff. The fate of the championship hung in the balance.