November 1, 2014

Medina
Rain
41°F

Women’s golf: Jessica Porvasnik is preparing for U.S. Amateur

Leading up to last week’s U.S. Women’s Amateur Qualifier, Jessica Porvasnik did something that she rarely does: take a break.

Porvasnik, who has been playing every week since the start of her freshman year at Ohio State, decided to drop the club and enjoy the summer like a typical college student.

“It’s been non-stop from the fall, through Thanksgiving and Christmas, and then playing all spring,” Porvasnik said. “Even when I got home this summer, I kept playing and never stopped picking up a club.

“I haven’t taken a break in a long time, but I needed it.”

The time away from golf paid off as Porvasnik qualified for next month’s U.S. Women’s Amateur after firing an even-par 72 to finish in a tie for third at Walnut Grove Country Club in Dayton on Thursday. The three-time Gazette MVP in the sport had three birdies and three bogeys while securing the spot in the national event at Nassau Country Club in Glen Cove, New York set for Aug. 4-10.

Porvasnik enjoyed some rest and relaxation on Lake Erie.

“I finally got to the point where I was like, ‘OK, I need to take a break,’” said Porvasnik, who played in the U.S. Women’s Open last month. “I went jet skiing with my friend (Avon Lake standout and OSU commit) Niki Schroeder and did a lot of family stuff. It was a good week and a lot of fun.”

“When I got back, my mind was way better and the mistakes I was making before were gone. Everything was way easier.”

After a marathon season in which Porvasnik was named the Big Ten’s Player of the Year and Freshman of the Year with a 73.35 stroke average for the Buckeyes — which included a school-record 65 at the Westbrook Spring Invitational — she then went on to qualify for the U.S. Women’s Open.

The Hinckley Township native posted a two-day total of 20-over and missed the cut in her first LPGA event. After playing in the Western Amateur the following week, she decided to take the time off.

Although Thursday wasn’t her best round, she’s happy to add another prestigious tournament to her resume.

“It was a solid round of golf,” Porvasnik said. “I hit the ball decent and found some areas that I need to work on.

“And my dad (Ron) was on my bag and he’s always there to support me, no matter what. He was there when I qualified for the Open, too, and I know he really wants to caddy for me at the U.S. Am.”

Porvasnik, who is 68th in the current Women’s World Amateur Golf Rankings, is ready for the two days of stroke play and then a match-play tournament.

She’s not going to fully take the next three weeks off, however, as the former Hornet plans on taking the clubs with her on a family trip to Hilton Head.

“It’s going to be another great experience,” Porvasnik added. “I will need to play well through the stroke play and then battle through match play, because that’s what it’s all about.

“I have a few short game and chipping things to work on, but my swing coach (Nick Paez) just texted me today and told me believe it can be done.”

Contact Dan Brown at sports@medina-gazette.com.