Two days before her formal entry into the Olympics, Yuka Saso showed just the kind of golf she can pull off.
The world no. 8 closed out the 2021 KPMG PGA Women’s Championship with a 5-under 67 highlighted by an eagle in No. 12. She finished with a share of 21st place in The Highlands Course in Atlanta, Georgia, Monday.
After her tournament-worst 75 pulled her down to 42nd place, Saso immediately buckled down to work. She shot a birdie at the very first hole to open her account.
She then went back to under par after back-to-back birdies in Nos. 5 and 6, to head into the clubhouse with 3-under 33 for the day.
Getting her momentum, the US Open champion powered through No. 12, a hole that pushed her down the previous day. This time, however, Saso was able to hit her stride and instead carved an eagle, to go 3-under overall.
Two bogeys followed that negated the huge score, but the 19-year-old would not let a spectacular round go to waste. She capped things off with two consecutive birdies at Nos. 17 and 18 for the final card.
Dottie Ardina, on the other hand, saw her 8-under card the previous day diminish. Nonetheless, she ended up with a 5-under 283 for tie-12th.
The 27-year-old tour veteran encountered an early roadblock in No. 1, before getting it back in the following hole. However, back-to-back bogeys in Nos. 6 and 7 brought her to 1-over 37 for the day.
Three consecutive bogeys starting from No. 13 pulled Ardina off contention. The Filipino just ended this round with a No. 16 for a more decent finish.
USA’s Nelly Korda duplicated her 4-under 68 from the previous round to win the title over compatriot Lizette Salas and pocketed the $675,000 (P32,727,375) winner’s prize. The American also just recently won the Meijer PGA Classic.
For their part, Filipinos Ardina and Saso banked $75,343 (P3,653,005.36) and $48,142 (P2,334,164.87), respectively.