SYLVANIA, Ohio (AP) – Thidapa Suwannapura’s most important focus going into the Marathon Classic was attempting to place collectively 4 strong rounds that will assist her maintain her LPGA Tour card.
She doesn’t have to fret about that any longer.
Suwannapura picked up her first win on Sunday, closing with a six-under 65 and birdieing the first playoff gap to defeat Brittany Lincicome at Highland Meadows.
Within the playoff, Suwannapura transformed a brief birdie putt after Lincicome hit her second shot right into a water hazard and scrambled for par.
“I never expect it was going to be today at all. I’ve just been struggling the whole year,” stated Suwannapura, whose earlier finest end was seventh at the 2014 Kingsmill Championship.
“Finally all my work I’ve been doing has come out and shown up today. After I knocked that last putt in, it just felt like a dream come true.”
With the win, the 25-year-old Thai participant has an exemption by way of the 2020 season. She can be the sixth first-time winner on tour this 12 months.
Suwannapura picked up three strokes over her remaining two holes, making eagle on the par-5 17th and shutting with a birdie on the par-5 18th to complete at 14-under 270. She then needed to await the ultimate seven teams to complete.
“I did not think or expect that 14 would be good enough, because I know there were two par-5s coming in on 17 and 18, and it’s a good opportunity for players to make birdie,” Suwannapura stated. “I used to be simply chilling within the clubhouse, you realize, playing around and stuff, attempting to calm down, and see what they’re doing. Now, like, ‘Oh, I have to go warm-up and try to win the tournament’. “
Lincicome shot 67. She had an opportunity to win in regulation, however her birdie putt from about 10 ft did a virtually 360-degree flip across the fringe of the cup and stayed out.
Regardless of having eight profession victories, together with this season’s opener within the Bahamas, the 32-year-old Lincicome stated she was extraordinarily nervous standing over that putt.
“I was shaking so bad. I had to take so many deep breaths. So it’s kind of cool to have those nerves, but learning how to play through them after 12 years of being a pro … 14 years of being a pro, I still haven’t figured it out, so that’s a little disappointing,” she stated. “(The putt) caught a lot of the hole, so I feel like I hit a pretty good putt for how nervous I was. I really haven’t seen one that aggressive in a long time, so that was just unfortunate, really.”
Subsequent up for the big-hitting Lincicome: a begin towards the boys at the PGA Tour’s Barbasol Championship in Kentucky. She is going to turn out to be the first girl since 2004 to play in a PGA Tour occasion.
Third-round chief Brooke Henderson led by two pictures after six holes, however struggled the remainder of the best way. Again-to-back bogeys on the 14th and 15th holes dropped her out of the lead. The 20-year-old Canadian completed with a two-under 69, one shot out of the playoff.
“Sometimes golf is weird. Sometimes it just doesn’t go your way, and that was kind of me the last four holes,” stated Henderson, who misplaced for under the second time in six events she has led after 54 holes.
In addition to the tour exemption, Suwannapura’s win got here with one other bonus. She was one among 5 gamers to earn a spot within the Girls’s British Open at Royal Lytham & St Annes.
The highest 5 gamers not already exempt earned spots. The opposite qualifiers have been Daniela Darquea, Celine Herbin, Mina Harigae and Mel Reid.