Ann Arbor, Michigan- Michigan natives Sarah Hoffman and Samantha Troyanovich both made their LPGA debuts on Thursday at the Volvik Championship.
Sarah Hoffman earned her entry into the Volvik Championship as one of two sponsor exemptions, while Samantha Troyanovich earned her way into the field by shooting a 3-under 69 during the Monday qualifier at Eagle Crest Golf Club in Ypsilanti, Michigan.
Both Sarah and Sam careers started down two separate paths as they try to make their dreams come true and tee off with some of the greatest women on the LPGA Tour. Sarah, started playing the game when she was five years old and holds a share of the course record at Travis Pointe Country Club with a 68. Hoffman played her college golf at Grand Valley State University but was originally recruited to play basketball but the coach at Grand Valley State was at the state championships were being held at Grand Valley State, the coach noticed Sarah and offered her a scholarship.
“I put myself out there for basketball. I didn’t try for golf, I didn’t try and be recruited for golf.”
Sam Troyanovich got her start a little differently. Troyanovich is from Grosse Pointe Shores, Michigan played golf on the boy’s team during her junior year because the school doesn’t have a girls golf team. Troyanovich was a top 3 scorer on the team.
Troyanovich ask the media after her round “Who doesn’t love golf in the mitten in May with the sun out?”
This week Troyanovich gets to sleep in her own bed again which is only 45 minutes away. She said “That is a luxury that I am adoring right now, and that my parents can come and friends and family, it’s awesome.”
Sam had a rough start to her first round, she started off with a par but bogeyed the second and double-bogeyed the fourth hole where her tee shot was behind a root of a tree and she had to punch out. She was about 85 yards out downwind and shot it over the green and took a seven. Troyanovich would rebound and shoot a final round 77.
Hoffman had a different start to her first LPGA round. She is the local favorite where her family and friends can also come and watch her.
Hoffman was asked about her first LPGA round “Enjoy it, no pressure but I felt like I waws going to thrw up this morning. So it went really well considering it was my first round, yeah.”
Sarah started off her first round as she would bogey number 2 and get that shot back by birdieing the narrow par 5 4th. Sarah remained consistent until the par 4 9th where she would bogey the hole to put her at plus 1 at the turn. She would give another stroke to the course on the par 4 10th. On the infamous par 4 13th with the “Volkswagen Beetle” green, Hoffman was 50 yards out for her 2nd shot. Hoffman would bogey two of her last four holes to put her at +4 thru 17 holes.
The fun happened for Hoffman on her final hole of the day where she found her tee shot in the left rough. She would pull her shots into the trees on left of the cart path. After a few minute wait for the rules official, it was concluded that she would be able to drop the ball because the scoreboard was in her view. After the drop, she would hit her ball into front bunker. Sarah would make the putt to par the 18th and remain at four over par for the tournament.
After the round she was asked about being in the trees on the left “Never, never. I told somebody, I’m like there’s not a shot out here I haven’t faced, but that was one of them. You know, luckily I got relief, so made the most out of it.”
Hoffman tees off of number 10 tee at 8:43 AM EST this morning and Troyanovich goes off number 10 tee at 2:05 PM EST.
Hoffman and Troyanovich both played with each other in the first Symetra tournament of the season. They both played in the practice round on Tuesday.
After watching and talking with both girls on Thursday, you can really see the passion for the game of golf and their excitement to experience their first LPGA event in front of their families and friends. Together, these two Michigan players give you a sense of excitement for the future of the LPGA and the quality of golf that comes from the Mitten.
We will see how their rounds go on Friday and hopefully they get to make it to the weekends. But even if they don’t make the cut, this experience will work wonders in their golfing careers.