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June 21, 2014

Amateur golf talent turns pro

MILLEDGEVILLE — Professional golf is unforgiving and expensive.

It's a curvy road for most trying to attain status on the major tours.

After one collegiate year, Milledgeville's Ashlan Ramsey, 18, believes it's time for her to test the waters after helping the United States win the Curtis Cup held in St. Louis, Mo.

The Curtis Cup pits the best eight U.S. amateurs against their counterparts from Great Britain and Ireland.

She enjoyed her final amateur event.

“It was awesome to end my amateur career with these girls I've grown up playing against. It's an honor to be selected to play for your country as one of the top-8 in the U.S.,” Ramsey said. “To come out with a win with those girls was just an unreal experience.”

Ramsey completed quite a memorable year as a freshman on the inaugural Clemson University women's golf team.

She earned Honorable Mention All-American status by the Women's Division I Golf Coaches Association. Ramsey started in every tournament, notching two wins and six top-3 finishes. She had a 72.91 stroke average.

Ramsey isn't wasting time. She entered the Michigan and Texas Women's Opens over the next two weeks.

Hard work comes with the job.

“Pacing myself and continuing to push myself to succeed at this next level will be important,” she said.

LPGA Tour Monday qualifiers are scattered amongst three Symetra Tour exemptions later this summer. This tour serves as a direct feed to the main LPGA circuit.

“I've never played a Symetra Tour event before but have heard a lot of good things about them,” Ramsey said. “I'm excited to test my game at this level.”

Pro golf takes a lot of funding. Players have to compete in countless events to make the entry fees back and advance up the ladder.

Typically, a male or female player is looking at around $80,000 to $100,000 during an average year to enter and travel to the right tournaments.

“At this level because I don't have any status, it's hard to get sponsorships. Golf is really different,” Ramsey said. “You don't just turn pro and get a really big signing bonus. It's tough right now, but hopefully things will come together to develop my career.”

Traveling the country to play professionally is a test in itself, but she feels ready. The talented golfer is acclimated to cross-country flights and the often-lonely pursuit.

Ramsey wants to take it one event at time this summer.

“I've been playing some good golf recently, which I'm really excited about. I'm starting to see the results that I want. Anything can happen and I'm going to set my goals high,” she said.

Visit the Ashlan Ramsey Fan Club Facebook page for daily updates and www.gofundme.com/a51das to assist the 18-year-old in her professional journey.

 

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