Spotlight on | Golf

Golfer Meghan Stasi of Oakland Park is shooting for another USGA first

 
 
Meghan Stasi unleashes a shot en route to winning the 2012 USGA Women's Mid-Amateur.
Meghan Stasi unleashes a shot en route to winning the 2012 USGA Women's Mid-Amateur.
Photo courtesy of the USGA / Photo courtesy of the USGA

Special to the Miami Herald

For a person with a lot of golfing firsts to her credit, Meghan Stasi strikes an extremely unassuming pose.

Stasi, 35, from Oakland Park, undoubtedly ranks among the best female amateur golfers in South Florida history.

Do you need something to back that up? Try the fact she has won four national USGA Women’s Mid-Amateur championships in the past seven years.

Only one other player, Ellen Port, has won four of those titles, and Stasi has plenty of time to move ahead of Port.

Stasi’s latest accomplishment was winning the inaugural Florida Mid-Amateur Championship 10 days ago.

She went into that championship as the favorite and she said that fact didn’t add to the degree of difficulty.

“Being favored is not necessarily more difficult,” she said modestly. “You try to approach every tournament the same.

“But I have to say it was nice being the first one to win that tournament,” she added. “Only one name will ever be the first name on that trophy.”

In the Florida Mid-Amateur, she had a two-day 3-over-par 147 total at the King’s Dunes Course at Lakewood Ranch.

Another South Floridian, Tara Connelly of Palm Beach Gardens, finished second, one stroke behind Stasi.

Stasi overcame a double-bogey on No. 8 and triple on No. 9 in the final round.

“I woke up with a little tweaked back,” she said. “Overall, I struck the ball well, but I missed two drives — basically out of play. The rest of it was pretty good. She called the 75 on the final day “not pretty, but it worked.”

Stasi made a brief run at a professional career during 2007, playing in six or seven LPGA events around that time.

However, her mid-amateur status — basically you have to be 25 years or older and have a USGA Handicap Index of 9.4 or less — is as comfortable to her as a well-fitting golf glove. She loves to travel, and golf allows Stasi and her husband, Danny, to board many a plane.

Danny is an avid golfer who met Meghan on the golf course, and there is a friendly rivalry between the two. They also run a popular restaurant called Shuck N Dive Cajun Café in Fort Lauderdale.

Recently, Stasi was playing a tournament in Finland, with Danny joining her. On the long journey back to sunny South Florida, the flight took them to Iceland. They had time, so they jumped off the plane and played a round of golf in Iceland before continuing their journey home.

“It was beautiful,” Stasi said.

This week, Stasi will be on the Florida team in the USGA State Team Championship in Ohio.

After that comes the big one, the 2013 USGA Mid-Amateur Championship Oct. 5-10 at Biltmore Forest Country Club in Asheville, N.C.

That’s when Stasi will try to surpass Port and become the only person in history to win five of those titles.

A lofty goal, but certainly achievable. Is Stasi all knotted up over the possibility? Nope, she continues to be her usual calm, unassuming self.

“I just try to play my best,” she said. “You have to be yourself.”

QUICK FACT

The odds of making two holes-in-one in a round of golf are one in 67 million. For the average golfer, more accurate odds would be “unachievable or off the board.”

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