Golf

Hilton Head's Karen Ferree to be inducted into SC Golf Hall of Fame

sfastenau@beaufortgazette.comDecember 21, 2013 

Hilton Head Island's Karen Ferree

USGA

There is Karen Ferree, the competitor, who won in extra holes her fist two matches at the U.S. Senior Women's Amateur in September and blamed herself for not finishing the job sooner.

And then there is Ferree, who talks excitedly about the possibilities for the nascent The First Tee chapter on Hilton Head Island, where she has lived more than 30 years. Ferree has spoken to a number of ladies' associations and expects numerous fundraisers to help earn the money the proposed facility needs to begin construction.

And there is Ferree, who will spend January through June volunteering with the LPGA Girls golf club of Hilton Head and Bluffton, teaching girls as young as 6 the game that has been part of her life so long.

The 63-year old will enter the South Carolina Golf Hall of Fame in January as a champion amateur golfer, a Class A PGA professional at Long Cove who became one of the state's first female professionals, and for her contributions to the game in the state.

"It's just fun competing," Ferree said. "You meet a lot of people and look forward to seeing them year after year. It's also nice that I've been healthy."

She will join the late golf course architect George Cobb as inductees for the 2013 class. The pair will be recognized during South Carolina Golf Association Golf Day on Jan. 11 at Columbia Country Club.

The inductees will bring the Hall's total to 63.

Ferree and her husband Jim, who was inducted in 2008, become the first husband and wife in the Hall.

Jim Ferree was the first director of golf at Long Cove and also a winner on both the PGA Tour and Champions Tour.

Karen Ferree hopes to continue her support of area golf through The First Tee, which will be in conjunction with the town's Boys and Girls Club.

"The community is going to have to step up financially," she said. "Once they do that, it will be a home run."

Ferree owns two titles as Women's South Carolina Golf Association Stroke Play champion, three titles in the WSCGA Match Play Championship and is a five-time WSCGA Senior champion.

She was Carolinas Player of the Year during a stretch from 2001-2003.

Ferree remembers fondly the state match play tournaments at Lady's Island Country Club, as much for the social setting as for the golf.

She has played in 20 United States Golf Association events, the latest in September. She reached the third round of the U.S. Senior Women's Amateur in California after winning two matches that stretched 19 holes.

"And that was my fault," Ferree said. "Poor putting."

Cobb designed several courses in the Lowcountry, including Sea Pines Resort's Ocean Course and what was known as Sea Marsh Course. He also designed Hilton Head courses at Port Royal Golf Club, Shipyard and Spanish Wells.

He laid out Ocean Point on Fripp Island and collaborated on The Legends Golf Course at Parris Island.

Cobb is probably best known for designing the par-3 course at Augusta National Golf Club and for his original design at Quail Hollow in Charlotte.

Count them

Karen Ferree has played in 20 USGA events. Here is the breakdown:

3 U.S. Women's Amateurs

3 U.S. Women's Opens

3 U.S. Women's Mid-Amateurs

10 U.S. Women's Senior Amateurs

1 State Team Championship

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