LEGENDS - Martha Nause.jpg

Martha Nause reacts after her chip just misses going in on Sunday.

Sherri Steinhauer will play in the U.S. Open this year, just not in the sport that defined the Madison native for the better part of 26 years.

Steinhauer was one of three golfers with Wisconsin ties who met at least one of 12 criteria categories for exemptions into the U.S. Senior Women's Open, the United States Golf Association announced Wednesday. The 72-hole event will be played for the first time July 12 through 15 at Chicago GC in Wheaton, Illinois. Three-time LPGA Tour winner Martha Nause of Sheboygan and Becky Iverson, now the director of golf at Bridges GC in Madison, are also exempt from qualifying for the USGA's first major championship for women 50 and older.

"At this point I will not be playing," Steinhauer, who retired from the LPGA in 2012, wrote in a text message to Wisconsin.Golf. "I haven't touched a club in 28 months. Will take too much to prepare. But I am playing in the Pickleball US Open" in Naples, Florida, at the end of April.

Steinhauer, exempt by virtue of being a past major championship winner and for being among the top 150 in LPGA career earnings, has been playing pickleball, a racquet sport that combines elements of tennis, badminton and ping-pong, actively since her retirement from golf. In November, she won a mixed-doubles national championship with partner Mike Moonan of Palm Desert, California, at the USAPA Championship in Arizona.

Nause, on the other hand, can't wait for the first U.S. Senior Women's Open. She qualified for an exemption as a past major champion (the 1994 du Maurier Classic) and for her play on the Legends Tour.

"I wasn't sure they had  an exemption for the du Maurier champions because at first it wasn't listed," Nause wrote in a text to Wisconsin.Golf. "But upon further investigation, they confirmed it was there. Phew!"

Iverson is also exempt based on having finished in the top 30 on the 2017 Legend Tour money list and intends to play. She hopes adding the U.S. Senior Women's Open following last year's addition of the Senior LPGA Championship will lead to more expansive senior circuit for women in the future.

"A lot of women have been working for a long time to get this event and it is great to see the USGA recognize the senior LPGA players," Iverson wrote in an email to Wisconsin.Golf. "Hopefully, this will help open the door for more opportunities."


Kristi Albers6a-Catherine Lacoste1, 4
Amy Alcott1, 5, 6Jenny Lidback5, 12
Helen Alfredsson5, 6, 10, 11, 12Murle Lindstrom1
Danielle Ammaccapane6Sally Little5
Janet Alex Anderson1Nancy Lopez5, 6
Donna Andrews5, 6, 12Marilyn Lovander12
Judy (Rosenthal) Anschutz5Pat O’Sullivan Lucey5
Tina Barrett6Meg Mallon1, 5, 6
Jean Bartholomew7, 11, 12Carol Mann1, 5
Laura Baugh3a-Barbara McIntire4
Susie Berning1, 5Lauri Merten1
Nancy Bowen5Alice Miller5
Pat Bradley1, 5, 6Mary Mills1, 5
Jerilyn Britz1Barb Moxness12
a-Mary Budke4Barb Mucha6, 11, 12
Betty Burfeindt5Martha Nause5, 11, 12
Donna Caponi1, 5Liselotte Neumann1, 6, 11, 12, 13
JoAnne Gunderson Carner1, 3, 6Alison Nicholas1
Kay Cockerill3Ayako Okamoto6
Kathy Cornelius1Joanne Pacillo3
Jane Crafter12Sandra Palmer1, 5
Jean Ashley Crawford3Dottie Pepper5, 6
Beth Daniel3, 5, 6a-Ellen Port14
Laura Davies1, 5, 6, 10, 11, 12Sandra Post5
Alicia Dibos12Cindy Rarick6
Judy Dickinson6Betsy Rawls1, 5
Mary Lou Dill3Michele Redman6, 11, 12
Dale Eggeling6Deb Richard3, 6
a-Macarena Campomanes Eguiguren17Laurie Rinker7, 12
Gloria Ehret5Kelly Robbins5
Shirley Englehorn5Kim Saiki-Maloney6
Cindy Figg-Currier12a-Terrill Samuel14
Jane Geddes1, 5, 6a-Anne Quast Sander4
Tammie Green5, 6Nancy Scranton5, 6
Lisa Grimes7, 12Patty Sheehan1, 5, 6
Kathy Baker Guadagnino1Cathy Sherk3
Marlene Hagge5Judy Kimball Simon5
a-Patricia Lesser Harbottle4Pearl Sinn3
Sandra Haynie1, 5Val Skinner6, 12
Chako Higuchi5Marilynn Smith5
Carolyn Hill3, 11Hollis Stacy1, 5, 6, 12
Cindy Hill3Sherri Steinhauer5, 6
Juli Inkster1, 3, 5, 6, 10, 12, 13Jan Stephenson1, 5, 6
Becky Iverson12a-Marlene Stewart Streit4
Christa Johnson5, 6, 12a-Carol Semple Thompson4
Trish Johnson11, 12, 13Kris Tschetter6
Cathy Johnston-Forbes5, 11Sherri Turner5, 6
Rosie Jones6, 12Donna Horton White3
Lorie Kane6, 11, 12, 13Kathy Whitworth5
Betsy King1, 5, 6, 12a-Sue Wooster17
a-Martha Kirouac4Mickey Wright1, 5
Hiromi Kobayashi6Joyce Ziske5
a-Judith Kyrinis14  

Bold – U.S. Women’s Open champion   a-amateur

Key to Player Exemptions:

  1. Players eligible to play in 2018 who have won a U.S. Women’s Open Championship (10-year exemption).
  2. From the most recent U.S. Women’s Open Championship, any player returning a 72-hole score.
  3. Any professional or amateur for reinstatement who has won the U.S. Women’s Amateur Championship (one-year exemption).
  4. Any amateur who has won the U.S. Women’s Amateur Championship (five-year exemption) and the 2017 runner-up.
  5. Players who have won any of the following events when deemed a major* by the LPGA Tour: ANA Inspiration (1983-present), Evian Championship (2013-present), Ricoh Women’s British Open (2001-present), du Maurier Classic (1979-2000), KPMG Women’s PGA Championship (1955-present), Titleholders Championship (1946-1966 and 1972) or the Wester Open (1930-1967) (10-year exemption). *including former names of said events, such as the LPGA Championship Kraft Nabisco/Dinah Shore.
  6. From the final 2017 LPGA Tour all-time money list, the top 150 money leaders and ties.
  7. Winners of the LPGA Teaching & Club Professional Championship (Championship Division) the last five years and the five lowest scorers and ties from the most recent championship.
  8. Winners of LPGA Tour co-sponsored events whose victories are considered official in the last five calendar years (2013-2017) and during the current calendar year to the initiation of the U.S. Senior Women’s Open Championship. (NOTE: The USGA will file blank entries for those players who become exempt after the close of entries).
  9. From the 2017 official Ladies European Tour and Japan LPGA career money lists, the top five money leaders.
  10. Playing members of the five most current United States and Europe Solheim Cup teams.
  11. From the 2017 LPGA Senior Women’s Championship, the 10 lowest scorers and anyone tying for 10th place.
  12. From the final 2016 and 2017 official Legends Tour Performance points list, the top 30 point leaders and ties.
  13. Winners of Legends Tour co-sponsored events, excluding team events, whose victories are considered official in the last two calendar years (2016 and 2017) and during the current calendar year to the initiation of the current year’s U.S. Senior Women’s Open Championship. Events must be a minimum of 36 holes. (NOTE: The USGA will file blank entries for those players who become exempt after the close of entries).
  14. Winners of the U.S. Senior Women’s Amateur Championship the last two years (2016 and 2017) and the 2017 runner-up; must be an amateur.
  15. Winners of the U.S. Women’s Mid-Amateur Championship the last two years (2016 and 2017); must be an amateur.
  16. Playing members of the two most current United States and GB&I Curtis Cup Teams and the two most current United States Women’s World Amateur Teams; must be an amateur.
  17. Winners of the 2017 Senior Ladies British Open Amateur and Canadian Women’s Senior Amateur Championships; must be an amateur.
  18. Special exemptions as selected by the USGA. Must have filed an entry by the close of entries. Deadline for submission of request: May 23, 2018. Players must select a qualifying site at the time of entry.

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