The First Federal Bank Ohio Women’s Open presented by Credit Adjustments Inc. is set to invade Eagle Rock Golf Club over the next few days.
Festivities start Saturday with the Pro Am.
Meanwhile, the Sal Hench Memorial Community Golf Day returns on Sunday before the Ohio Women’s Open will be contested on Monday and Tuesday at Eagle Rock.
“That is a really neat thing for the Hench family to step up and have the Hench Family Memorial Community Day,” lauded OWO president Tim Whetstone. “Where literally anybody at any level can go out and get a free lesson with a pro, where you’d be spending big money for somewhere else. It’s right here, it’s very low key and different aspects of the game can be taught and pros enjoy giving back to the game.”
Sunday’s free instructional clinic is open to the public with guest professionals providing instruction. Individuals interested in lessons should contact Jen DonDeylen at 419-785-4423 for a time slot.
Ohio State graduate Jessica Porvasnik, a Hinckley native, will be back to defend her last two Ohio Women’s Open titles. She won with a two-day total of 139 last year and 138 in 2017.
“I’m looking forward to another great year,” said Porvasnik. “I always have really awesome host-housing at Amy Zeller’s house. It’s always a fun atmosphere. She took me in the first and we always have a ton of fun.
“It’s (golf course) a cool little layout,” added Porvasnik. “It’s a fun week for everyone, I know that.”
Porvasnik has been busy this year on the links.
“I would say it’s definitely moving in the right direction,” stated Porvasnik of where her game is at. “I’ve played in about 15 events this year and definitely playing better.”
The short irons are crucial at Eagle Rock, according to the back-to-back defending champion.
“It definitely plays a little shorter as compared to all the other state opens in the summer,” said Porvasnik. “If your wedge game is strong, you will definitely play well.”
Porvasnik won the Ohio Division I state golf title in 2012 at Highland High School.
A big addition to the event this year will be live scoring on Monday and Tuesday.
“We felt like looking at other tournaments and the ladies that come here, a lot of them do have live scoring,” said OWO president Tim Whetstone. “We felt that it would be a plus for our sponsors that get on our web page. Plus the ladies families and friends can get on and see the scores like before when each round was over.”
Whetstone is enthused by the support the community brings to the event.
“I think it’s really unique here in northwest Ohio,” said Whetstone. “If you go online and look at the Symetra Tour and other states opens, we’re pretty much a small community in a big pond holding golf tournaments.
“We house a lot of players, which really brings a personal touch,” said Whetstone. “Amy Zeller is our chairwoman of that and it’s a tough job to find people to open up their homes and have ladies stay there. They’re quality people and Defiance is just a really good town to work in. There’s people that volunteer, they step up and ask how they can help.”
Senior champion Cheryl Fox will also be back this year. Fox fired a 149 a year ago for the senior crown.
“I think the numbers and quality of play is really good,” remarked Whetstone. “Last year, three of our senior players went on to qualify for the U.S. Senior Open. We had those in our Open, so that was a real feather in our cap.”
This year’s event is scheduled to have over 60 players.