Lucy Li, who first stepped into the spotlight by qualifying for the 2014 U.S. Women's Open as an 11-year-old, is ready for the next step in her golfing career.
The 17-year-old Redwood City, Calif., resident notified the U.S. Golf Association and the World Amateur Golf Ranking that she is turning pro, her mother told the San Francisco Chronicle on Wednesday.
Li will join the second-tier Symetra Tour for the next year, as she is ineligible to compete full time on the LPGA until she turns 18. She earned her way onto the Symetra Tour by tying for 72nd in October at Stage 2 of LPGA Q-School.
Li previously had retained her amateur status even after appearing in an Apple Watch ad campaign in February. The USGA determined that she violated its amateurism rules but merely gave her a warning.
Back in 2014, Li carded consecutive rounds of 78 to miss the cut in the U.S. Women's Open at Pinehurst No. 2 in North Carolina.
Two years later, Li won the Junior PGA Championship. In 2017, she was the low amateur at the first LPGA major of the year, the ANA Inspiration, making the cut and tying for 70th in Rancho Mirage, Calif.
Li made the cut at the 2018 U.S. Women's Open, tying for 55th at Shoal Creek in Birmingham, Ala.