Erynne Lee of Silverdale, Wash. and Chris Williams of Moscow, Idaho are among the four amateurs who have been selected by the United States Golf Association (USGA) to compete in the 2013 Copa de las Americas, Jan. 3-6, 2013, at Doral Resort and Spa in Miami, Fla.
The Copa de las Americas is an amateur team competition for countries in North America, Central America, South America and the Caribbean. There are three 72-hole competitions – men’s, women’s and overall – with 18 holes played on each of the four days.
Lee is the 2012 WSGA Women’s Player of the Year, an honor she earned in 2011 as well. And Williams is the 2012 WSGA Men’s Player of the Year, an honor he also won in 2011.
Lee is a sophomore at the UCLA. During her freshman she earned Pac-12 Conference and Division I Freshman of the Year honors and was named to the NGCA All-America first team. During her junior career, Lee garnered four wins on the American Junior Golf Association circuit: the 2010 Laredo Energy Junior at Traditions, the 2008 and 2009 Kathy Whitworth Invitationals and the 2008 AJGA at Wenatchee. She was a member of the 2008 Junior Ryder Cup Team, as well as the 2007 Evian Junior Cup Team USA.
Lee advanced to the semifinals of the 2008 U.S. Women’s Amateur, where she lost to eventual champion Amanda Blumenherst, and was a tri-medalist at the 2010 championship, where she lost in the quarterfinals to eventual runner-up Jessica Korda. Lee also reached the quarterfinals at the 2011 and 2012 Women’s Amateurs. She has competed in two U.S. Women’s Opens, in 2008 and 2011, along with the 2008-10 U.S. Girls’ Junior Championships. Lee was a member of the USA Team for the 2012 Women’s World Amateur Team Championship. She has one younger sister, Katie, who also competed in the 2010 Women’s Amateur.
Williams, a senior at the University of Washington and a member of the 2011 USA Walker Cup Team, won the 2012 Mark H. McCormack Medal as the leading amateur in the World Amateur Golf Ranking. Williams won the 2012 Western Amateur, while also earning stroke-play medalist honors there in 2011 and 2012. He also won the 2012 NCAA Southwest Regional and advanced to the quarterfinals of the 2012 U.S. Amateur Championship. Williams was a member of the USA Team that captured the 2012 World Amateur Team Championship in Antalya, Turkey, with a record 54-hole score in the rain-shortened event. He won the 2012 Washington State Amateur Championship by 10 strokes, and finished runner-up in the 2012 Sahalee Players Championship, an event he won in 2011.
In 2012, Williams earned NGCA All-America first-team honors and was a first-team all-Pacific-12 Conference selection. In 2011, he earned second-team All-America honors as well as all-Pac-10 honors. He was a second-team all-Pac-10 choice in 2010.
Among his other amateur tournament victories are the 2011 Sahalee Players Championship, the 2011 Pacific Coast Amateur, the 2011 Duck Invitational, the 2011 Bandon Dunes Collegiate, the 2010 Arizona State Thunderbird and the 2010 Battle of the Beach. He was second at the 2010 NCAA West Regional with a final-round 65.
Williams played in the 2011 U.S. Open at Congressional Country Club, missing the cut by two strokes. He lost in the quarterfinals of the 2010 U.S. Amateur Public Links Championship to eventual champion Lion Kim.
In 2010, he won the Phil Mickelson Award as the NCAA Freshman of the Year and was Pac-10 Freshman of the Year while earning third-team All-America honors. He was a member of the 2010, 2011 and 2012 USA Palmer Cup teams.
The other player selected for the women’s team is Lindy Duncan of Fort Lauderdale, Fla., a senior at Duke University, who represented the USA at the 2012 Curtis Cup Match. Steven Fox of Hendersonville, Tenn., the 2012 U.S. Amateur champion who is a senior at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga, is the other player selected for the men’s team.
The captain of the USA Teams is Jim Williams, of Orinda, Calif., a member of the USGA Executive Committee and a member of the USGA International Team Selection Committee.
“The Copa de las Americas is a wonderful opportunity for the USGA to further our relationships with golf organizations from other nations,” said Williams. “Not only do these four days represent the best of international competition and camaraderie, they help establish and strengthen partnerships that help promote and sustain the game around the world.”
This will be the fifth playing of the Copa de las Americas, and the first time the championship will be conducted in the United States. The USA won the 2010 overall championship in Buenos Aires, Argentina. Jessica Korda and Jennifer Song of the USA won the women’s portion of the championship, while the USA’s Nathan Smith and Peter Uihlein finished second to the team from Argentina.
For more information about the USGA, visit www.usga.org.