YPSILANTI, Michigan (EMUEagles.com) –For the fourth time, Eastern Michigan University’s Women’s Golf Program will host a tournament on the team’s course at Eagle Crest Golf Club from October 4-5. The Shirley Spork Invitational kicks off Monday at 9 a.m. with 36 holes of continuous play. The final round is scheduled for Tuesday at 9 a.m.
Akron, Bowling Green, Central Michigan, Dayton, Detroit Mercy, Green Bay, Oakland, Ohio, Western Michigan and Youngstown State will join EMU on the par 72, a 6,175 yard setup.
Named in honor of the first woman inducted into the E-Club Hall of Fame in 1981, Shirley Spork began her golfing career early on. She started playing with a club, a putter, at the age of 10. While attending MSNC at the time, Spork won the women’s match play championship three times in four years. In 1947, she won the very first organized national collegiate championship for women’s track and field, and she also won the Michigan Amateur 1949.
After graduation, Spork became a teacher at Detroit Public Schools, but realized that she would much prefer to play golf. She turned professional in 1950 and performed the tour, but along the way, realized that she was still a teacher and in 1959, along with Marilynn Smith, Betty Hicks and Barbara Rotvig, she founded the Teaching division and LPGA Professional Club.
Spork was the first LPGA professional to organize golf courses in foreign countries and was a two-time LPGA Teacher of the Year (1959, 1984). She was President of the T&CP Division of the LPGA from 1960 to 1966 and received the Meritorious Service Award in 1989. Her accolades include the Byron Nelson Award in 1994, the Ellen Griffin Rolex Award from the LPGA in 1998, the membership in the inaugural class of the LPGA Teaching & Club Professionals Division Hall of Fame in 2000 and a member of the Michigan Golf Hall of Fame in 2002. Spork was recently named one of the Professional Golfers Association Hall of Fame members (PGA) of America 2019.
In 2019, EMU was crowned champion with an 899 (299-297-303 = 899), while Mikaela Schulz of Michigan was the individual medalist with a 212 (68-72-72).
Fans can follow the scores live on GolfStat.com. Entrance to the event is free.
Shirley Spork EMU Invitational – October 4-5, 2021
Or: Ypsilanti, Michigan (Eagle Crest Golf Club)
Format: 36 holes on Monday, 18 holes on Tuesday
By / Yardage: 72/6 175
Field: Akron, Bowling Green, Central Michigan, Dayton, Detroit Mercy, East Michigan, Green Bay, Oakland, Ohio, West Michigan, State of Youngstown
Align: Natai Apichonlati, Kyleigh Dull, Olivia loberg, Anna watson, Sophie wygonik