(LEAD) Ko Jin-young takes second LPGA win of the season

by | Sep 20, 2021 | LPGA

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From Yoo Jee-ho

SEOUL, September 20 (Yonhap) – World number 2 Ko Jin-young has found the LPGA winners for the second time this season.

The South Korean star shot 11 under 205 to win the weather-shortened Cambia Portland Classic in West Linn, Oregon on Sunday (local time). South Korean compatriot Lee Jeong-eun and Australian Su Oh shared second place with seven.

Playing in front of her parents, Ko had a bogey free day of 69 at Oregon Golf Club, ending the day with a birdie on the 18th hole.

Due to heavy rainfall in the region, which ruined the events on Saturday, the tournament was played over 54 instead of 72 holes.

“I really wanted to play yesterday, but we couldn’t play. I tried to do a bogey round today and I did it,” Ko said at her press conference. “I had a lot of misses so I had to make great par saves.”

This was Ko’s second win in 2021, following her title at the Volunteers of America Classic in July and her ninth overall.

Ko remains one of only three South Koreans to have won an LPGA title this year, along with Park In-bee and Kim Hyo-joo, who each won once in a bad year for the South Korean contingent. There are still seven tournaments pending in 2021.

Ko was under eight in two rounds and was ahead of Gemma Dryburgh of Scotland. When Dryburgh outplayed the competition on Sunday with a couple of bogeys on the first nine, Ko held out and took her first birdie of the day on the seventh hole.

Ko boarded the 11th hole to get 10 under for the tournament and no one was very close at that point. Not that she needed it, but Ko dropped a long, 23-foot birdie putt on the final hole to complete her four-stroke win.

Despite all the rain on Saturday, Ko said the course was in “amazing” condition.

“Fairways and greens are really perfect. I can’t wait to play next year,” said Ko. “Fairways and greens are really tight so we had to hit the fairways and even greens straight away. The greens are really fast, but I’ve done a great job this week.”

Ko spent the unexpected day off on Saturday with her parents, who had traveled from South Korea. They bought Korean food and ice cream and watched Korean dramas together on Netflix.

“It was fun to be with my parents,” said Ko. “This year I have two wins with my parents. We’ll see what happens in the next three weeks.”

Ko’s parents will stay with her for these three weeks. Does that mean she’ll win the next three tournaments too?

“We’ll see,” said Ko, laughing.