Howey-In-The-Hills, Fla. — A total of 144 players will take on the challenge that Mission Inn Resort and Club presents starting Friday with round one of the Mission Inn Resort and Club Championship.
Three featured groups highlight the competition for the eighth event of the 2021 Epson Tour season.
Dewi Weber, Vicky Hurst, Samantha Wagner (No. 1 tee, 8:14 a.m.)
The 2016 NCAA Division I Women’s Golf National Individual Champion, Dewi Weber (Groningen, Netherlands), competed for the University of Miami Hurricanes. Last year on the Epson Tour, Weber claimed three top-10 finishes. Coming off her second T8 finish this season, Weber returns to the Mission Inn Resort and Club Championship where she finished fourth last year.
Eight-time Epson Tour Champion, Vicky Hurst (Melbourne, FL) is back in Howey-In-The-Hills where she claimed her best finish of last season, a tie for fifth. The 2011 Team USA Member for the Solheim Cup has an LPGA Tour career best of T11 at the 2012 ANA Inspiration. The Florida native has one top-10 finish in six starts this year, a T6 at the Epson Classic.
The final member of this featured group is Florida native Samantha Wagner (Windermere, Florida). The University of Florida graduate found her career-best finish in her second start of the season at the Copper Rock Championship with a tie for second. She comes into this week off her seventh career top-10 finish at the IOA Golf Classic present by RP Funding.
Linnea Johansson, Olivia Mehaffey, Avery Zweig (No. 1 tee, 2:09 pm)
Linnea Johansson (Bastad, Sweden) was a three-time All-Big 12 performer for Oklahoma State University. Last season, Johansson claimed five top-20 finishes in six starts including runner-up at the Mission Inn Resort and Club Championship.
In 2016, Olivia Mehaffey (Belfast, Ireland) won the Irish Women's Open Championship and the Welsh Ladies Open Stroke Play Championship and helped lead the Great Britain & Ireland team to the Curtis Cup victory. The four-time All-American from Arizona State made her first appearance in a professional event at the 2016 AIG Women’s Open. In 2020, Mehaffey made the cut at the 2020 ANA Inspiration and also competed in the AIG Women’s Open and U.S. Women’s Open. Earlier this year she placed T6 at the Carlisle Arizona Women’s Golf Classic as an amateur, this week will be her professional debut.
In January, amateur Avery Zweig (McKinney, Texas) won her first American Junior Golf Association tournament at the Diamond Resorts ANNIKA Invitational presented by Rolex. The win earned the fourteen-year-old an exemption into this week at Mission Inn Resort and Club Championship. Earlier this year, Zweig also claimed third place in the girls 12-13 age division at the Drive, Chip and Putt at Augusta National.
Sierra Sims, August Kim, Karolina Vlckova (No. 1 tee, 9:06 a.m.)
Sierra Sims (Tampa, Florida) was a Women’s Golf Coaches Association (WGCA) Second Team All-American at Wake Forest University in 2015. She played the weekend three times in six Epson Tour starts this year, with a season-best finish of T48 at the Epson Classic.
One of eleven Florida natives in this week’s field, August Kim (St. Augustine, Florida) returns to compete in her second event this season. The first four-time Women’s Golf Coaches Association (WGCA) All-American Scholar in Boilermakers history, the Purdue University graduate is in her fifth year on Tour. Kim is coming off a top-20 finish in her home state at the IOA Golf Classic presented by RP Funding.
Completing the final group, Karolina Vlckova (Kladno, Czech Republic) is a University of Florida graduate. A two-time All-SEC Second Team performer for the Gators, Vlckova competed at the NCAA Division I Women’s Golf National Championship in each of her four years. Vlckova’s career-best finish was T4 at the 2018 FireKeepers Casino Hotel Championship.