MILWAUKEE — Don't let the dateline fool you. It might say Milwaukee, but this is the week that Allyssa Ferrell and former college teammate Liz Nagel turn it into West Lansing, Michigan.
The Edgerton native has become the unofficial host of the annual Symetra Tour PHC Classic at Brown Deer Park. At least, Ferrell is the host of the two Symetra Tour friends — this week, it's Nagel and former Tennessee golfer Erica Popson, against whom Ferrell played in college and with whom she has played on the LPGA Tour's developmental circuit.
“I am able to stay at home all week in my own bed, which is always nice,” Ferrell said. “I have an 8-month-old puppy Breslin (named after Michigan State's basketball arena), so it's special that I get to spend extra time with her. Also, Erica Popson was in Edgerton with me before coming to Milwaukee and Liz Nagel will spend the week at my house. It has become a ‘Milwaukee week tradition’ for us.”
Coming off a season-best tie for 17th place at the Forsyth Classic, Ferrell is hoping to develop some momentum heading into the final eight events of the season. The former Wisconsin State Women's Open champion is currently No. 91 in the Volvik Race for the Card.
“My season has been really slow to start, but I am hoping that this week will jump-start the rest of my fall so that I am able to end on a positive, high note,” Ferrell said. “I have learned not to have expectations because that's when disappointment creeps in. I am going to focus on enjoying the week in Wisconsin.”
Ferrell is one of five Wisconsin golfers in the field, joining University of Wisconsin golfer Bobbi Stricker and fellow Symetra Tour golfers Jenna Peters of Kohler, Jessie Gerry of Madison and Casey Danielson of Osceola. Stricker and Peters are playing on sponsor's exemptions.
This will be the fourth time Ferrell has teed it up in the only Wisconsin event on Symetra Tour calendar until next year, when the Janesville Classic near her hometown joins the sechedule. She looks to build off her 37th-place finish in this event a year ago.
“I am expecting some extra fans to be walking along, cheering me on,” Ferrell said. “My 8-year-old cousin will probably make an appearance and she is one of my biggest fans. It will be a very special and emotional week for sure.”
Host venue Brown Deer Park GC brings back special memories for Ferrell, too.
“When I was 16 years old, I won the Brown Deer Woman’s Amateur and it was the biggest accomplishment of my career to that point,” said Ferrell, who is coming off a tie for 30th finish at the Fuccillo Kia Classic of NY. “I am very proud to be from Wisconsin and I love this state very much. I know I'll have the home crowd support.”
Ferrell will begin play off the 10th tee at 1:57 p.m. in a group with Louise Ridderström of Stocksund, Sweden, and Pajaree Anannarukarn of Bangkok, Thailand.