By: Derryl Trujillo
Inland Sports Senior Writer
One could make the argument that Sydnee Michaels is the most accomplished women’s golfer to come out of Southwest Riverside County.
A product of Linfield Christian, where she won the 2006 Big Sky League (now defunct) individual title as a senior, Michaels held LPGA Tour membership from 2012-2020 and earned $974,202 in 123 starts (74 made cuts with 5 top fives). She was a two-time winner on the Symetra Tour in 2011 earning $56,232 to finish fourth in earnings and graduate.
In a previous “Where are they now?” feature I did on her, Michaels emphasized the fact that she is semi-retired (stepped away because of back issues) and has lifetime veteran status if she were inclined to return to competition.
She recently announced a return to competition of two events thus far: the LPGA Tour Volunteers of America Classic in Dallas through July 4 and the California State Women’s Open at Carlsbad’s Omni La Costa Resort & Spa (operated by the SCPGA), July 6 and 7.
I caught up with Michaels by phone and we talked about the road back to her first events in nearly three years.
We discussed Tiger Woods’ road back to winning the 2019 Masters and how he wanted his own children to see their dad in fighting form and Michaels said, “Seeing Tiger win that Masters in 2019 after overcoming those injuries was so inspiring to me and a huge part in pushing me to give it another go. When I was playing previously, Isla (her daughter) was just an infant but now that she’s older it’ll be a special experience to be out there for both of us.”
About her expectations these next two weeks, the former Linfield Christian Lion and UCLA Bruin added, “First, I want to make sure I complete two weeks healthy. I’m mostly looking forward to being out there and getting my feet wet in competition again. It’s not necessarily starting from square one because as a tour player competing comes naturally to me, but I do think I’ll get the groove of things rather quickly again.”
Her fashion line, Isla Sport, recently launched, which makes it an extremely exciting time in the Michaels’ household. She remarked about it all: “It’s definitely very exciting to see everything come together and it wasn’t planned like this but I’m excited to wear my line these next two weeks and show off what we’ve worked on.”
Michaels credits instructor George Gankas with showing her some technical changes that alleviate pressure on the back, hard work in the gym, and acupuncture for putting her in a position to compete again. Her husband Glen will carry the bag on a temporary basis.
Her schedule after these two weeks is still to be determined with the possibility of some Symetra Tour events along with whatever starts she can get from the lifetime veteran category and those results.
Derryl Trujillo can be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.