Pair Of Utah Locals Hope To Defend Home Soil At Inaugural Copper Rock Championship

Apr 15, 2021, 5:05 PM
Kendra Dalton watches her second shot on the fourth hole during the LPGA Q-Series presented by Blue...
Kendra Dalton watches her second shot on the fourth hole during the LPGA Q-Series presented by Blue Cross and Blue Shield North Carolina at Pinehurst No. 9 on October 31, 2019 in Pinehurst, North Carolina. (Photo by Matt Sullivan/Getty Images)
(Photo by Matt Sullivan/Getty Images)

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – A pair of Utah locals are in the field ahead of next week’s inaguaral Copper Rock Championship, Utah’s Symetra Tour stop.

Haley Sturgeon and Kendra Dalton will both be looking to climb the leaderboard at next week’s event with the hopes of securing glory at their home event.

Haley Sturgeon

Sturgeon graduated from Dixie State University in 2016 and currently works as an Assistant Pro at the Salt Lake Country Club. She is without Symetra Tour status, in fact, she was only able to secure a spot in the field after Copper Rock Head Pro John Horton granted her a sponsor’s exemption.

Her golfing adventure thus far has included many injuries, unfortunately, and she has battled to stay healthy. Sturgeon’s Symetra Tour status fell by the wayside roughly a year ago, when the pandemic put a halt to the sporting world. Since then, she has been patiently awaiting her chance to return to tournament golf.

“I have gone to Q School, I’ve missed the cut, always by like 1 or 2 [shots],” Stuegeon told KSL Sports. “So they give you baseline status and every year I have had an injury or had to have surgery or I have been working too much,” she added.

Fortunately, Sturgeon can return to the professional golfing circus with a big week at Copper Rock. If she wins the tournament, she will receive full Symetra Tour status for the remainder of the season. Or, if she finishes in the top 10, she will receive an invitation to the following week’s stop.

Kendra Dalton

Dalton is currently on the Symetra Tour. She is living the not-so-glamourous life that the Symetra Tour provides, or at least that is how she put it.

Lots of driving from destination to destination is how Dalton explores America. She is playing in Tucson, Arizona this weekend before getting on the road and travelling to Hurricane, Utah, then, she will jump back in her car and travel to Garden City, Kansas.

Nonetheless, Dalton is living her dream and is thoroughly enjoying the weekly pressures that golf provides.

“I enjoy being in new places all the time, I enjoy travelling, it doesn’t bother me” Dalton told KSL Sports. “There is like an art to it in how to conserve energy and how to get things done most efficiently because a lot of it falls on you,” she added.

After graduating from BYU in 2018, Dalton has spent the previous two seasons vying for her LPGA card. In both 2019 and 2020, she has competed in 31 tournaments and has made 24 total cuts. Her best finish came in 2019 when she ended in a tie for sixth at the Prasco Charity Championship. Last year, her best finish was a tie for ninth at the IOA Golf Classic.

So far, Dalton has competed in two events in 2021 and has placed in a tie for 41st and a tie for 17th.

A Winning Formula

Both Dalton and Sturgeon believe their best attribute is driving the golf ball. Being long off the tee and utilizing their power and precision. A trait that will certainly come in handy at the tricky Copper Rock course.

Dalton admits that her chipping and putting can let her down occasionally, whereas, Sturgeon admits that her iron play is what she needs to fixate her attention on.

The tournament boasts a prize purse of $200,000 with the winner taking home $30,000.

KSL Sports is a sponsor of the Copper Rock Championship.


Tony Finau - Face - Rocket Mortgage Classic - practice round...
Tom Hackett

Tony Finau Drops Wife’s Phone In Pool While Dancing, Focus Now Turns To FedEx Cup Playoffs

Tony Finau dropped his wife's phone in the swimming pool while dancing at his daughter's birthday party during a recent trip to Utah.
1 day ago
Pat Perez - Greg Norman - Taylor Gooch - Dustin Johnson - Patrick Reed - LIV Golf...
Doug Ferguson, AP

PGA Tour Says Players Knew Consequences Of Joining LIV Golf

The PGA Tour asked a federal judge in San Francisco to deny the appeal of three suspended players who joined Saudi-backed LIV Golf.
2 days ago
Patrick Fishburn - Tee Shot - Utah Championship...
Tom Hackett

Patrick Fishburn Finishes One Shot Behind Utah Championship Winner Andrew Kozan

Utah local Patrick Fishburn finished in a tie for 2nd at the Utah Championship behind champion Andrew Kozan at Oakridge Country Club.
3 days ago
Patrick Fishburn - Utah Champinship...
Tom Hackett

Blair, Fishburn Enter Weekend In Top 5 Position At Utah Championship

Zac Blair and Patrick Fishburn will enter the weekend at the Utah Championship both inside the top five following rounds of three-under-par.
5 days ago
Tony Finau - looks - shocked...
Tom Hackett

Tony Finau Voted ‘Nicest Player On PGA Tour’

Utah's Tony Finau has been voted as the "nicest player on tour," according to a recent Golf Digest report voted on by players and caddies.
5 days ago
Zac Blair - Utah Championship - Opening Round...
Tom Hackett

Zac Blair Leads Locals Following Day One At Utah Championship

Former BYU golf star Zac Blair concluded his opening round at the Utah Championship with a 7-under-par, 64, to sit one shot back.
6 days ago
Pair Of Utah Locals Hope To Defend Home Soil At Inaugural Copper Rock Championship