CHAMPAIGN, Ill. (WCIA) — Illinois golfer Tristyn Nowlin is getting healthy at just the right time. She’s in the field for the inaugural Augusta National Women’s Amateur this week in Georgia.
“I mean it is the biggest tournament of my life,” Nowlin said.
The junior has been recovering from a January wrist surgery that’s kept her out of the Illini lineup this semester. But now back to 100 percent, the Kentucky native is ready to roll for the biggest tournament of her life. Nowlin is one of 72 players picked to compete in the inaugural Augusta National Women’s Amateur. The 54-hole event is the first of its kind at the famed Augusta National Golf Club, home of the Masters.
“I’m going to kind of let myself for a little while, sit back looking at the course,” Nowlin said.
“At the end of the day, she said, ‘I am there to play golf.’ So doing everything she can to be prepared for playing to the best of her abilities, yet taking in the experience itself,” Illinois head coach Renee Slone said.
Nowlin has spent the past few weeks getting ready to go, practicing here at the Lauritsen/Wohlers Facility, which ironically enough was built to look and play like the practice area at Augusta National. In a sport like golf where being comfortable plays a big role in success, every little piece helps.
“They always say that TV doesn’t do it justice on the greens, they’re exteremely elevated,” Nowlin said. “So I think right now, having this green and being able to utilize these resources we have, have been awesome.”
Nowlin is guaranteed at least one practice round at Augusta National on Friday. If she avoids the cut after the first two days at a nearby track, she’ll get a second opportunity at one of most prestigious courses in the world.
The first and second rounds of the tournament are Wednesday and Thursday.