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Portland Tribune: LPGA opportunity excites Riverdale High golfer

Published Sept. 16, 2020

Read the full Portland Tribune article here.

"Yvonne Vinceri set out Aug. 12 to enjoy a fun day golfing with friend Momo Odom.

By the end of that day at Langdon Farms Golf Club in Aurora, Vinceri had earned the opportunity for a lot more fun.

That is the way the 18-year-old Riverdale High senior is approaching the opportunity to play alongside professionals at the LPGA Cambia Portland Classic, which runs Sept. 18-21 at Columbia Edgewater Country Club.

The 49th annual tournament was shortened to 54 holes because of the poor air quality in Portland. If conditions improve on Thursday. as expected, the tournament will be played Friday through Sunday.

The Portland teenager will be on the course with players she's looked up to, including favorites such as Brooke Henderson, Stacy Lewis and Morgan Pressel.

"It feels amazing to be able to play with some of these accomplished pros," Vinceri said.

Vinceri earned the spot by firing a 4-under-par 68 to win the PDX Amateur Open on Aug. 12 by two strokes. It was the first time she finished 18 holes in fewer than 70 strokes...

As a sophomore at Riverdale, Vinceri placed second in the Class 4A/3A/2A/1A state tournament. There was no high school state tournament this spring because of COVID-19.

Despite her golfing success, Vinceri had a decision to make after her sophomore year at Riverdale. In addition to golf, she played soccer at a high level. But golf was always her favorite sport, so she decided to focus on it and give up soccer.

In late August, she decided to play her college golf at Idaho (over Portland State and a walk-on invitation from Oregon State).

Vinceri's summer golf season this year was limited to local tournaments because of COVID-19. In mid-July, Vinceri won the Southern Oregon Junior Championship at Rogue Valley Country Club in Medford for the second year in a row.

Twice Vinceri has attended the Cambia Portland Classic as a spectator. That isn't an option this year, with spectators not allowed at Columbia Edgewater because of the pandemic. But, barely a week after beginning her senior year of high school, Vinceri will be there, playing alongside pros.

Vinceri's home course is Rock Creek Country Club, but since qualifying for the Cambia Portland Classic she has played several practice rounds at Columbia Edgewater and says it almost feels like a second home course.

She will take confidence in her short game into the experience.

"One thing my dad has always told me is that my short game is the most important part of my game, so I work on that a lot," she said.

Vinceri doesn't sound at all intimidated by the opportunity.

'I have no idea what it's going to be like," she said. "As long as I play my own game, it doesn't really matter what happens. It'll be fun.'" 

Written by Paul Danzer, Portland Tribune