The ShopRite LPGA Classic Presented by Acer has awarded a sponsor exemption to New Jersey junior golf standout Megha Ganne, who will compete as an amateur in the annual LPGA tournament held May 25-31, 2020 on the Bay Course at Seaview, A Dolce Hotel. Ganne, a 16 year old attending high school in Holmdel, New Jersey, is the reigning New Jersey State Golf Association Junior Girls champion. She also qualified and competed in the 2019 U.S. Women’s Open and advanced to the semifinals of the 2019 U.S. Women’s Amateur Championship. Ganne finished second in the 2019 Drive, Chip and Putt National Finals at Augusta National, becoming the first player to earn a spot in the finals for the fourth time in the event’s six-year history. She will also compete in this year’s prestigious Augusta National Women’s Amateur.
"Our event has a long history of serving as a launching point for the future stars of the game,” said Leela Narang, Executive Director of the ShopRite LPGA Classic Presented by Acer. “We’re excited to provide an opportunity for Megha to showcase her skills against the best players in the world in her home state of New Jersey.”
The exemption is the latest chapter in the ShopRite LPGA Classic’s history of providing playing opportunities for promising young players. The tournament helped launch the careers of some of the biggest names in golf like Lexi Thompson, Paula Creamer, Brooke Henderson and Michelle Wie - as well as rising stars like Maria Fassi, Jennifer Kupcho and Leona Maguire. Thompson was 15 years old when she made her professional debut at the 2010 ShopRite LPGA Classic. She won the 2019 event with an eagle on the final hole to capture her 11th career victory. “Competing in my first LPGA tournament will be a feeling like no other,” said Ganne. “I’m so excited to have received this exemption knowing that I’ve attended this event as a spectator so many times growing up. I’m thrilled for the challenge and eager to rise to the occasion.” Ganne has been a member of The First Tee of Metropolitan New York and LPGA-USGA Girls Golf since the age of seven. She is believed to be the first member of a First Tee chapter to play in an LPGA event.
“We are thrilled for Megha that she has been offered this incredible opportunity,” said Katie Rudolph, COO of The First Tee of Metropolitan New York. “To be able to play in her home state will be especially exciting as we will be able to bring hundreds of her First Tee friends and family to cheer her on. It will be surreal for our participants to watch their friend play inside of ropes alongside the stars of the LPGA.”