The US’s Lilia Vu beat her compatriot Angel Yin in a playoff to gather her maiden primary identify on the Chevron Championship on Sunday, taming a difficult and unfamiliar route on the Club at Carlton Woods close to Houston.
Vu began the day 4 pictures again however marched up the leaderboard with 5 birdies – together with two on 17 and 18 – and one bogey, carding a four-under-par 68 for a successful general of 10-under 278.
She waited nervously at the sidelines as earlier chief Yin (72) let the affair slip to a tiebreak with a couple of overdue bogeys.
Yin did not publish a lot of a struggle within the playoff as her 2nd shot hit the water and Vu, who accrued her first identify at the excursion on the Honda LPGA Thailand in February, held her nerve to empty a protracted birdie putt for the win. .
“The past two days, I was very angry. I didn’t feel like myself,” said Vu. “I just felt like I was getting angry over every single little thing, and that’s usually not how I roll.”
Vu said she thought of her grandfather, who fled his native Vietnam with his wife and children and died early on during the Covid-19 pandemic, to keep herself going.
“Today, I was getting really upset on the course, and I just had to remind me, like grandpa is with you, and he’d be really disappointed if you were getting upset like this and that you didn’t get your act together .”
The 25-year-old, who had considered quitting the sport only a few years ago, was overcome with emotion after securing the win and said it was validation for the struggles she faced in her career.
“Everything happens for a reason, all the bad things,” stated Vu. “I had a pretty tough – not easy – past two days. I was definitely my own enemy and I don’t know how I pulled this out.”
It was bitter disappointment for Yin, who started the day at the top of the leaderboard with compatriot Allisen Corpuz (74) and had the outright lead through 13 with a near-flawless performance at the Jack Nicklaus designed layout.
But the victory slipped through her fingers as she hit the bunker on 16 and 17, bogeying both holes, and she never regained her nerve for the playoff.
“Just wasn’t hitting it very good. Honestly, I held it together, and then 16 and 17 really just was like bad club decision,” said Yin. “Obviously in the playoff hole, I just didn’t hit a good shot. It just kind of spoke a lot about today.”
Players adapted to fresh territory at the year’s first women’s major, as the tournament kicked off in a new home after five decades at Mission Country Club in Palm Springs.
American Nelly Korda drained an eagle putt on 18 to finish third, one shot back, after missing the tournament a year ago following surgery for a blood clot in her arm. The Olympic champion and 2021 Women’s PGA Championship winner moves back to the top of the world rankings as a result.
“Every single time I can finish well at a major, I put myself into contention, that’s what I strive to do,” she stated.
“I have a lot to work on, but for it to be the first major of the year, I think I played pretty well, and hopefully I can build on it.”