IT DIDN’T take long for rising Cavendish Golf Club star Megan Burgess to make an impact in the United States — she won the first tournament she entered after embarking on a four-year golfing scholarship.
Now, after a unbelievable spring season representing the Lady Lions women’s golf team at Lindenwood University in Missouri, during which she added another tournament victory and never finished outside the top five, Megan has been named the Heart of America Athletic Conferences’ (HAAC) Player of the Year.
The 21-year-old, from Macclesfield, was surprised to be awarded such an honour – especially as she had only joined the university team in January: “I have had a great first semester with the team and it is such an honour to be awarded player of the year.”
Megan’s first individual success in the States was in her first event, the Spring Hill Badger Invitational in Alabama, when she posted rounds of 77 and 81 to win by five strokes, and helped her team to an 11-shot victory. She followed this up with victory in the Missouri Western Invitational, shooting a one-over 74 in the opening 18 holes, the best round of the tournament. She shot a 78 on day two, but her total of 152 was the best score by five strokes, again leading her team to victory.
And Megan led her team at the NAIA National Championships, averaging 80 through three rounds and then concluding with a one-over 74 in the fourth round. She tied for 16th place, and her team finished 17th overall.
“Playing over there is much different, the schedule is quite challenging, the courses are much longer and they sometimes make you play off the men’s tees,” Megan said.
“But this experience is really helping my game. We get free access to four courses and one is floodlit.”
Combining her four-year golf scholarship, awarded through United Sports USA, with a bachelors in PE and health and fitness, Megan is aiming to eventually reduce her handicap from three to scratch, and one day turn professional.