Achasta Golf Course head professional Tom Fowler says his course is in tip-top condition for a field of top collegiate golfers in the National Golf Coaches Association Hooters Women's Collegiate Team Championship that opens today in Dahlonega.
"The course is in unbelievable shape," Fowler said. "Our course superintendant Jeff Bridwell did an excellent job getting it ready."
The fairways have been double cut as Achasta brings in 55 women's college pairings for this three-day event with a format that has a twist of its own.
"This is a great course that sets up well for the players," NGCA executive director Roger Yaffe said. "There's a lot of risk-reward holes."
The field for this event consists of some of the biggest Division-I programs in the country, but also has Division-II and Division-III schools competing.
North Georgia College & State University's Casey Truelove and Erica Breeden are in the field and paired against players from Saint Edward's in the first round that begins at 8 a.m. today.
One of the best 1-2 combinations on a team consists of University of Arkansas' Emily Tubert and Emma Lavy, both First-Team All-SEC selections this season.
Also playing are Marina Alex from Vanderbilt, the 2010 SEC Player of the Year, and Lauren Stratton. Cal-State Fullerton's Taylor Fowler has PGA ties, as she is the younger sister of 2010 Rookie of the Year Rickie Fowler.
Other schools represented in the field include the University of Georgia, Oklahoma, Mississippi, Wisconsin, Colorado, Michigan State, South Carolina, Missouri, Louisville, Nebraska and Boise State.
Closer to home, teams representing Kennesaw State and Mercer are also playing. Buford High graduate Abby Johnson is one of the two girls representing Georgia.
Tom Fowler says the best part of this event is how club community members welcome visiting players into their homes.
"They welcome these girls into their homes and treat them like one of their own for three or four days," he said.
Since this is an offseason event, players are representing themselves and are not playing for the institution they attend.
"We have some great players on hand for this event," Fowler said.
This is the second year that Achasta has hosted this tournament.
Last year, Wake Forest's Michelle Chin and Cheyenne Woods, the niece of Tiger Woods, won the event.
Each round in this event has a different format. Today, teams will play an alternate shot format, which means the player that hits off the tee gives the fairway shot to their teammate.
They also alternate tee shots between holes.
Then on Day 2, it goes to a best-ball format. The final day of the 54-hole event is an aggregate shot format, meaning both players have their shots for a hole totaled together for one score.
The awards ceremony is expected to begin at the end of day 3 at about 3:30 p.m. Thursday.