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Featured Groups: 2024 Dream First Bank Charity Classic

Featured Groups: 2024 Dream First Bank Charity Classic

Featured Groups: 2024 Dream First Bank Charity Classic

GROUP ONE | 7:41 AM CT | 12:41 PM CT

Hailee Cooper

Cooper is playing in just her fifth Epson Tour event this season by earning more starts after the first reshuffle of the season. She got her first start by winning the L’Auberge Lake Charles Championship on the ANNIKA Women’s All Pro Tour, earning an exemption into the IOA Championship presented by Morongo Casino Resort & Spa. Cooper would make the cut, finishing T58, but it was good enough for her to earn more starts. The 24-year-old rookie took advantage of her opportunity, making two of her next three cuts, including a T21 finish at the Otter Creek Championship. Cooper is slowly climbing her way up the Race for the Card standings, a ranking system that determines LPGA Tour membership based on a player’s performance on the Epson Tour and she is just a couple of solid finishes away from securing her LPGA Tour membership for the 2025 season.

Jessica Welch

Welch is in her seventh year as a professional and has found her form as of late. The 30-year-old has made the cut in four of her last five starts, with a T8 finish two weeks ago at the Otter Creek Championship. Welch added to her total of top finishes with her T8 performance in Columbus, Ind., making it five total top-10 finishes on the Epson Tour. Welch needs another strong performance this week to climb the Race for the Card standings with less than half the season remaining.

Anne Chen

Chen, like Cooper, has made the most of her starts over the past couple of months, with Chen entering her fourth Epson Tour event this week. The rookie tied the 18-hole tournament record last week at the Island Resort Championship, which helped her secure a T7 finish. Chen has made her last two cuts on the Epson Tour and has found good form while doing so. With her confidence high, expect a strong week out of the Duke University alum.

GROUP TWO | 1:36 PM CT | 8:36 AM CT

Soo Bin Joo

Joo picked up her first Epson Tour win at last week’s Island Resort Championship, beating out a group of five players by one shot. She has played in six events so far this season, making the cut in all of them, with an additional top-10 finish at the Casino Del Sol Golf Classic, where she ended the week T8. The 20-year-old spent her 2023 season on the LPGA Tour, narrowly missing out on retaining her LPGA Tour card, finishing 117 in the Race to CME Globe standings. During her time on the LPGA Tour, she finished T6 at the ShopRite LPGA Classic, her best career finish on the LPGA Tour. Now, Joo sits No. 6 in the Race for the Card and is in prime position to return to the LPGA Tour for the 2025 season.

Kate Smith-Stroh

Smith-Stroh has had an up-and-down first half of the season. The ups have resulted in solid finishes, while the downs have resulted in missed cuts. She has four top-25 finishes over the 2024 season, putting her at No. 53 in the Race for the Card, which is a very comfortable position heading into the last half of the season. The Minnesota native finished No. 19 in 2023, coming close to earning her LPGA Tour card for the first time. Smith-Stroh also had a strong placing in 2023 at the Dream First Bank Charity Classic, finishing T9 with three straight rounds of 69 or better. Look for her to continue her recent good play this week in Garden City.

Heather Lin

Lin is in her sophomore season on the Epson Tour after a strong rookie season, which saw her finish in the top 50 in the Race for the Card. Lin is No. 37 in the Race after starting her season with back-to-back top-10 finishes. The recent form for Lin has not been up to the standard she has shown over the past two seasons, making one cut in her last five starts. Despite the slump, Lin’s game has all the makings to compete week in and week out. Buffalo Dunes Golf Course has proven to be a scoreable course over the years and Lin can put herself back on track to an LPGA Tour card if she finds the form she had to start the season.