Ryu eyes third major with three stroke lead

Ryu eyes third major with three stroke lead

Ryu eyes third major with three stroke lead

Korea's Ryu So-yeon and Park Sung-hyun and Japan's Nasa Hataoka, who carded a final-round eight-under 64, headed into a sudden-death playoff after finishing the tournament locked at 10 under.

So Yeon Ryu birdied three of her final five holes to open up a three-shot lead after the third round of the KPMG Women's PGA Championship.

Sung Hyun Park, of South Korea, kisses the championship trophy after making a birdie on the second hole of a playoff on the 16th hole to win the KPMG Women's PGA Championship golf tournament at Kemper Lakes Golf Club in Kildeer, Ill., Sunday, July 1, 2018. Ryu made birdie right before the par save to build a two-shot lead with two left. That prevented her shot from going in the water and she ended up with a par on the hole.

She finished the front nine one-under after sinking a birdie on the seventh hole.

The 19-year-old Hataoka was coming off her first tour victory at the NW Arkansas Championship last week and almost pulled out this one even though began the day all but out of contention.

However, Hataoka was the first to drop out of the playoff, though she made par.

"Since there was no water below the ball, that really gave me the confidence to do a nice shot", she said.

Park made a 3-meter (9.8-foot) birdie putt to extend the playoff. While Park and Henderson found early momentum, it took Ryu a little bit longer to find her rhythm. "And I was really happy, like, I couldn't help that". "I think if I do better play in the future, then you'll see a lot of fist ceremonies". "I still can't believe I'm sitting here, next to this trophy".

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After only needing 25 putts on Thursday, the Smiths Falls pro required 31, 32, and 33, respectively, over the closing three rounds, even as she continued to hit 13-15 greens in regulation. The new version of the PING Craze-E putter she added to her bag this week marks a handful of putters she has used this year. She had one short putt rim out and another deflect out of the back of the cup in a double-bogey on No. 2. She knows what she has to do, and she took a big step Saturday. Park left zero doubt that she would part of the four-person team with her win on Sunday.

Ryu's 69s give her a six-under 138 total atop the leaderboard with former Women's PGA Championship victor Henderson, who had a 71, and Park, who posted a 72.

Park began her sophomore campaign slowly and missed two cuts in her first seven starts, after not missing any in 23 events in 2017.

Temperatures at the Kemper Lakes course climbed to well over 100 degrees Fahrenheit (40 Celsius) for the golfers who teed off in the afternoon.

Despite her successful debut last season, Park has had an inconsistent second season on the Tour. Park, a prodigious ballstriker not known for her putting, answered with her own clutch birdie roll.

"It was my first time doing that kind of shot", said Park.

Kim In-kyung finished tied for eighth at five under par, while Amy Yang and Ko Jin-young finished tied for 11th at four under par.

Both Park and Ryu will be in the field for this week's 2nd annual Thornberry Creek LPGA Classic, the next stop on tour.

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