Amid difficult playing conditions
including winds gusting to nearly 25 miles per hour, Georgette Rolle defeated Raquel
Riley by five strokes to win the Bahamas exemption into the 2016 Pure
Silk-Bahamas LPGA Classic January 25-31 at the Ocean Club Golf Course on Paradise
Rolle, 30, who competed in the 2014 tournament
but missed the cut, shot 83-85—168 on Dec. 19-20 at the Ocean Club to defeat
Riley in the four-person qualifier conducted by the Bahamas Golf Federation.
Riley, who played in last year’s tournament, will get another chance to earn a
berth after earning a spot in the tournament’s Open Qualifier on Monday, Jan.
“Out there, it felt like we were in a boxing match,” said Rolle,
a two-time winner of The Bahamas National Amateur Championship who is now a teaching
professional at the Bahamas Golf Federation Driving Range. “The conditions were
so difficult over the past few days that every shot required extra attention.
So I know that we were all trying to gut it out and just finish the lowest. It
wasn’t the greatest of play, but we were out there battling it out.”
Rolle will be among 108 players competing in the fourth edition
of the Pure Silk-Bahamas LPGA Classic, which offers a purse of $1.4 million and
is the opening event of the 2016 LPGA season. Sei Young Kim is the defending
champion after she defeated Ariya Jutanugarn and Sun Young Yoo in a sudden-death
playoff. Kim went on to win two other tournaments in 2015 and was named the Louise
Suggs Rolex Rookie of the Year.