Ko wins back-to-back Canadian titles
Monday, August 26, 2013
Amateur Lydia Ko took the lead Sunday at the Canadian Women's Open and pulled away with a 64 to win by five shots and successfully defend her title.
The 16-year-old birdied three straight at Nos. 2-4 and added two more to make the turn in 30. She scattered two more birdies and a bogey on the back nine for the day's best round by three shots, finishing the tournament at 15 under – five shots ahead of second-place finisher Karine Icher, with third-round leader Caroline Hedwall and Brittany Lincicome another shot back.
Lydia Ko, in pictures
Lydia Ko through the lens of our Tracy Wilcox.
It was Ko's fourth professional win of her career -- all during the last 20 months.
She also won the 2012 U.S. Women's Amateur.
"I shot 10 under at the Australian Open earlier this year and that was Round 1, and that was great," Ko told the Golf Channel. "Today I was in a little more of a pressure position, so I was really happy with my 64, I got off to a really good start so that really helped my day."
Ko opened with a 65 on Thursday and stayed in contention all week, a second-round 69 her high round of the tournament at Royal Mayfair in Edmonton, Alberta.
Asked Saturday about the role of defending champion, Ko gave an answer that, in hindsight, foreshadowed Sunday's round.
"You know, it feels really good," she had said. "I've been liking Canada so far. You never know what's going to happen tomorrow, but up until now I'm pleased with where I am, just one shot back, and you never know what's going to happen."
Speculation continues to build regarding whether the New Zealand teen will turn pro.
"I will say I am thinking about it," she said. ". . . Nothing has changed within the last 72 hours. I am happy at the moment. I think this win will make us think a little better, think, 'What is a good option right now?' "
I.K. Kim and Stacy Prammanasudh finished T-5 at 8 under, followed by a list of Solheim Cup participants: Caroline Masson and Suzann Pettersen finished T-7 at 7 under, with Gerina Piller another shot back at 6 under. Europe's Jodi Ewart Shadoff and Americans Paula Creamer and Jessica Korda round out the top 10 and ties at 5 under.
The tour heads to Portland, Ore., next week for the Safeway Classic. Mika Miyazato, who finished T-13 Sunday at 4 under alongside Brittany Lang, World No. 1 Inbee Park and Angela Stanford, will defend her title at Columbia Edgewater.