When describing golf courses, the word “championship” often surfaces. Although this term can be somewhat ambiguous…At Longbow Golf Club it fits. Literally. After a complete renovation in 2003, the club’s leadership began embracing competitive golf in its many shapes and sizes.
Longbow Golf Club’s roots with championship golf began in 2004 by hosting the American Junior Golf Association (AJGA) largest open field event. For the past 14 years the AJGA PING Heather Farr Classic Presented by Longbow Golf Club has featured nearly 5,000 junior golf elite and attracted some of the best talent on the planet. Hunter Mahan won it in 1999; Paula Creamer earned back-to-back titles in 2003 and 2004, and World #1 LPGA Professional Inbee Park won in 2005. Other past champions now on the LPGA Tour include Mina Harigae (2006), Kimberly Kim (2007), Allison Lee (2010) and 2013 LPGA Rookie of the Year Moriya Jutanugarn (2011). Boys past champs include Rory Hie (2004) and Richard Lee (2007), who have both found success on the Asian Tour. Home-grown players who visited the winner’s circle include Amanda Blumenherst (2002), Drew Kittleson (2005), Philip Francis (2006), Kyung Kim and Trey Kaahanui (both 2008) and Lindsey Weaver (2012). Other notable champs currently enjoying success at the collegiate level run even deeper. UCLA Bruin Anton Arboleda (2010), LSU’s Zach Wright (2011) and Arizona Wildcat Lindsey Weaver and Texas Longhorn Beau Hossler (both 2012).
Hosting collegiate golf tournaments and championships, the Notre Dame Women’s Golf Team has hosted the Visit Mesa Clover Cup, a 54-hole NCAA Division I Invitational at Longbow Golf Club since 2012, The NCAA Division II Women’s Golf Championships, WAC Women’s Golf Championships, National Junior College Women’s Team Championships, Golfweek Junior Series National Qualifying, U.S. Amateur Qualifying, Gateway All American Tour, Cactus Tour, Dreamchasers PGA Tour events and many other tournaments have also been contested at Longbow Golf Club.
Although the club has made a name as a place to compete, it’s also a place to learn. The First Tee of Phoenix and Mesa Public Schools conducts its golf and life-lessons programming from Longbow Golf Club reaching over 35,000 elementary school students each academic year. The Junior Golf Association of Arizona frequently hosts junior golf events and clinics like “These Boys are Good” and “USGA/LPGA Girls Golf”. Located exclusively at Longbow Golf Club, the Fisher Bryan Golf Academy has been helping juniors, elite juniors and adults alike enjoy the game through instruction programs producing improved performance in golf.
The LPGA Symetra Tour Gateway Classic at Longbow Golf Club has been held for three of the last four years. In 2013, former Arizona State Sun Devil, Jaclyn Sweeney, stuck a fork in the competition with a score of 71-71-67 – 209 (-7) defeating runner-up and LPGA Tour Professional Alena Sharp. In 2014 Alena Sharp came back to win first place firing 67-66-71 – 204 (-12) to hold off eventual Symetra Player of the Year Marissa Steen for the win. In 2015, playing in her first LPGA Symetra Tour event as an amateur with a sponsor exemption given by Longbow Golf Club, 16 year old Chandler Hamilton High School Junior Hannah O’Sullivan beat the entire field of 119 LPGA professionals scoring a three round total of 15 under par, 4 better than her nearest challenger. O’ Sullivan was the youngest in history to win a Symetra Tour event and the third youngest in history to win an LPGA professional tour event.
“Longbow Golf Club is proud to host the LPGA Symetra Tour’s season premier for three of the last four years,” said Bob McNichols of Longbow Golf Club, “and we welcome them back in 2017. The perfect winter climate, excellent course conditions and unwavering support of women’s professional and amateur golf delivers an exceptional experience and a challenging test of golf. And what better result than to have our local amateur Hannah O’Sullivan as the reigning Champion.”
Longbow Golf Club’s tournament-tested track has hosted more than its share of championships over the years. And during that time it has also managed to entertain the average daily and weekend golf enthusiast, as well. With 1,000 loyalty card holders and over 40,000 rounds per year, Longbow Golf Club is a local favorite and a national venue for competitive golf. Hosting over 40 professional, amateur, junior, corporate and charity golf events each year, Longbow Golf Club stands out as Mesa’s most popular venue.
Honored by Golfweek Magazine in 2009 as one of the Top 100 Resort Courses in America and many other awards, and recognition by writers and raters, Longbow Golf Club stands as a champion of golf, “The Essence of Arizona Golf”.
2017 Longbow Golf Club Championship Events At A Glance
March 12 – Arizona Junior Challenge – AJGA Qualifier
March 13 – Bank of Hope Founders Cup – LPGA Qualifier
March 16-19 – Visit Mesa Notre Dame Clover Cup, NCAA Division I
Invitational – 15 Women’s College Teams
March 30-April 1 – LPGA Symetra Tour Gateway Classic at Longbow Golf Club –
31 Countries of Origin Represented
April 14-16 – AJGA PING Heather Farr Classic Presented by Longbow Golf Club –
20 US States and 6 Countries of Origin Represented
April 27-30 – WAC Men’s Team and Individual National Golf Championship
May 6-7 – U.S. Kids Golf Arizona – Southwest Championship & Regional Qualifier
May 21-28 – National Junior College Men’s Team and Individual Championships
May 28-30 – Southwest Girl’s Golf National Academy – USGA & LPGA Girl’s Golf