Ariya Jutanugarn defeats sister at Western

Moriya, right, and Ariya, left, took first and second at the 86th South Atlantic Amateur at Oceanside Country Club.

Moriya, right, and Ariya, left, took first and second at the 86th South Atlantic Amateur at Oceanside Country Club.

MONROE, Mich. – Here’s a familiar storyline: Two Jutanugarn sisters in the final pairing of a major amateur tournament. It happened again June 23 at the Women’s Western Amateur, as Ariya, 16, overcame Moriya, 17, for the victory at Monroe Golf and Country Club.

Ariya began the week as the stroke-play medalist, an honor which she nearly assured she would win with an opening 7-under 66. She drew the top seed on the match-play bracket and cruised to the final, where she met her sister. She defeated Moriya in the 36-hole match, 2 and 1.

The Jutanugarns are the first set of sisters to meet in a Women’s Western Amateur final, but having to beat the other to win a tournament is nothing new. It happened earlier this year, when the Jutanugarns took the top two spots at the South Atlantic Amateur. That week, Moriya came out on top.

Ariya is the top-ranked player in the Golfweek/Sagarin Junior Rankings while Moriya tops Golfweek’s Women’s Amateur rankings.

For Ariya, the Women’s Western comes on the heels of recent victories at the AJGA Rolex Girls Junior and the AJGA Thunderbird. She also is the reigning U.S. Girls’ Junior champion, and finished as the low amateur at the first major of the LPGA season, the Kraft Nabisco Championship.

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