In just her second season on the LPGA Tour, Riverdale’s Mariah Stackhouse is well on the way to establishing herself as one of the tour’s top young American players.
On the strength of a pair of top-10 finishes in June, one of them, Stackhouse has moved up to 55th on the LPGA money list with earnings of more than $205,000.
After playing well enough in her rookie season last year to retain her tour status, Stackhouse has raised the level of her game in her sophomore season. She has played consistently thoughout 2018, making 12 of her first 15 cuts while improving as the season has progressed.
Stackhouse opened 2018 on a positive note, tying for 11th in the season-opening event in the Bahamas. After narrowly missing the cut in two of her next three starts, she made her next nine cuts in a row, and placing 36th or higher in seven straight events with three top-20 finishes.
In her last four starts prior to a missed cut in the Women’s PGA Championship, Stackhouse was 43-under over 14 rounds of golf with 10 scores in the 60s and no score higher than 72. In those four tournaments, Stackhouse tied for 17th and 27th in two events in Michigan, along with a tie for seventh in New Jersey and a T9 in Arkansas.
Thanks to her strong play this season, Stackhouse earned a second spot in the field of a major championship at the recent KPMG Women’s PGA Championship in the Chicago suburbs. Stackhouse also played earlier this year in the tournament formerly known as the Dinah Shore Championship. She missed the cut in the Women’s PGA, but came back the next week with a tie for 15th in Wisconsin, missing a third top 10 by just one shot.
Stackhouse has been a familiar name on the Georgia golf scene since she was a youngster. While she was still in middle school, she won the GSGA Girls Championship in 2007 and ’08. She also won the GSGA Women’s Match Play Championship both years and captured the Georgia Women’s Golf Association Championship in 2008 and ’09.
She won the Georgia Women’s Open in ’09, and was part of a team representing the GSGA that captured the USGA State Women’s Team Championship later in ’09.
During her high school years, Stackhouse was a three-time American Junior Golf Association All-American, with one of her victories coming in her home state at Country Club of the South. Stackhouse qualified for the U.S, Women’s Open in 2011 and qualified again two years later after her freshman season in college.
Stackhouse began her college career at Stanford in 2012, and was a first team All-American as a freshman and sophomore. She won two individual tournament titles both seasons, including a record-setting performance in an event hosted by Stanford her freshman year in which she shot a 61 highlighted by a 9-under 26 on the opening nine.
Her junior and senior seasons did not go as well individually for Stackhouse, but she was part of two team championships, starting with her role on the victorious U.S. Curtis Cup team in 2014. Stackhouse went 2-0-2 as the U.S. scored a 13-7 victory in St. Louis.
After a winless junior season, Stackhouse delivered like a champion in the decisive match for the NCAA Championship, hitting a succession of clutch shots to win the match and give Stanford the team title. Stackhouse was 2-down with two holes to play, but sent the match to extra holes with birdies at 17 and 18 before winning with a par on the first playoff hole.
Stackhouse turned pro following her senior season in 2016, and earned a non-exempt spot on the 2017 LPGA Tour. She divided her time early last year between the LPGA and Symetra Tours, and nearly won the Symetra event at Atlanta National, placing second behind a soon-to-be LPGA Tour member.
A tie for seventh in the event in Wisconsin last summer marked the first splash made by Stackhouse on the LPGA Tour, and she finished the year 114th on the money list with earnings of almost $82,000, making the cut in seven of 15 starts.
Stackhouse began 2018 with non-exempt status on the tour, but after tying for 11th in the season opener, has played in every event since mid-March except the U.S. Women’s Open, and has locked up an exempt spot for 2019.
Thus far in 2018, Stackhouse has put up some remarkably consistent scores week in and week on the LPGA Tour. In her first 42 rounds this season, she did not posted a score higher than 74, and in the first two events in which she missed the cut, did not have a score higher than 73.
As a result of her recent outstanding stretch of play, Stackhouse currently ranks 27th in scoring average on the LPGA Tour at 70.75. She is 55thin driving distance at 257 yards, 73rd in fairways hit, 39th in green in regulation and 77th in putts per greens in regulation.