Notebook: Choi Satisfied With Title Defense


Na Yeon Choi tied for 17th in defense of her U.S. Women's Open title. (USGA/John Mummert)
By Dave Shedloski
June 30, 2013

SOUTHAMPTON, N.Y. – Na Yeon Choi acquitted herself well in defense of the U.S. Women’s Open title she won a year ago at Blackwolf Run in Kohler, Wis., finishing in the top 20 for the fifth time in seven appearances.

Despite not making a birdie in the final round, Choi, 25, of Korea, closed with a 3-over-par 75 Sunday at Sebonack Golf Club and ended up tied for 17th at 7-over 295.

“I didn't have any birdies today, so it was tough,” said Choi, who now lives in Orlando, Fla. “Yesterday was tough, too, but I got four birdies out there. I think I putt 19 [times] on back nine. I did my best until the last hole and just my putts didn't work well, so now I know what I have to practice.”

Choi, who owns seven LPGA titles but has yet to win in 2013, said she enjoyed her year as the Women’s Open champion.

“Last four days, four rounds, every first hole I heard the announcement I won, you know, 2012 U.S. Women's Open champion. I feel great. If I compare this year and last year, I mean, the result is a big difference. Still, I'm very proud of myself playing in this tournament. The course was very tough, but I love to play this golf course. I think this is good golf.”

Good Rebound for Feng

After bogeying the first two holes, Shanshan Feng, of the People’s Republic of China, shot a 2-under-par 70 to share the day’s best round with amateur Casie Cathrea. The result also vaulted her into the top 10 and an automatic exemption into the 2014 Women’s Open at Pinehurst No. 2 in North Carolina.

It was Feng’s second consecutive top 10 at the Women’s Open after finishing no better than tied for 42nd in her first five appearances.

“I have been talking with my coach about staying patient, and I did that today after not starting too well,” said Feng, 23, who tied for fourth last year at Blackwolf Run and shared ninth in 2013 with Brittany Lincicome.

Feng made four birdies on the inward nine, including a pair of 3-footers at 13 and 16. She also birdied the 10th from 15 feet and the 17th from 20 feet.

She said her improved play the last two years is the product of not putting too much pressure on herself just because it’s a major championship. “I’ve learned to relax more, though I still try my best,” said the winner of the 2012 LPGA Championship. “I just needed to stop trying so hard.”

Sebonack shows toughness

After two rounds of the 68th U.S. Women’s Open, Inbee Park was nine under par and 10 other players were in red figures. But Sebonack Golf Club proved a stiffer test on the weekend when the hole locations were more challenging, the tees were moved back and the wind blew more consistently.

The result: just three players finished under par, and Park actually played 1-over-par golf on the weekend (71-74), finishing at 8-under 280.

Just five players posted a sub-par score on the weekend, four on Sunday. Meanwhile, there were 17 rounds of 80 or higher in the final two rounds.

“This is my sixth U.S. Open, so I would say that this one had, by far, the hardest greens, and it was the windiest out of all of them,” said Jessica Korda, who tied for seventh at 2-over 290. “I would say by far I had so many in‑between clubs these last two days, and you’re just standing there and you don't know what this ball's going to do. Is it going to sit? Is it going to go? Is the wind going to take it? It’s pretty mentally draining out there.” 

Dave Shedloski is an Ohio-based freelance writer whose work has previously appeared on USGA websites.

Follow the USGA
Become a Facebook Fan of the USGAFollow us on Twitter @usopengolf
World Amateur Golf Ranking
WAGR Counting Event
Partner Links
AmEx image
AmEx image
AmEx image
AmEx image
Chevron
   

The USGA and Chevron have committed to using the game of golf to encourage students in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) disciplines. This commitment has led to the creation of extensive golf-focused STEM teaching tools, and has resulted in charitable contributions to support golf-related programs through Eagles for Education™

At U.S. Open Championships the Chevron STEM ZONE™ is an interactive experience highlighting the science and math behind the game of golf through a variety of hands-on exhibits and experiments.

The partnership has also produced educational materials such as the Science of Golf video series and a nationally-distributed newspaper insert which are provided to teachers as tools to enhance existing curriculum in schools. These lessons teach the science behind the USGA’s equipment testing, handicapping, and agronomy efforts.

For more interactive experiences featuring golf-focused STEM lessons, visit the partnership homepage.


Chevron image
Rolex
   

Rolex has been a longtime supporter of the USGA and salutes the sportsmanship and great traditions unique to the game. This support includes the Rules of Golf where Rolex has partnered with the USGA to ensure golfers understand and appreciate the game.

As the official timekeeper of the USGA and its championships, they also provide clocks throughout host sites for spectator convenience.

For more information on Rolex and their celebration of the game, visit the Rolex and Golf homepage.



Rolex image
IBM
   

IBM has partnered with the USGA to bring the same technology, expertise, and innovation it provides to businesses all over the world to the USGA and golf's national championship.

IBM provides the information technology to develop and host the U.S. Open’s official website, www.usopen.com, as well as the mobile apps and scoring systems for the three U.S. Open championships. These real-time technology solutions provide an enhanced experience for fans following the championship onsite and online.

For more information on IBM and the technology that powers the U.S. Open and businesses worldwide, visit http://www.usopen.com/IBM

AmEx image
Lexus
   

Lexus is committed to partnering with the USGA to deliver a best-in-class experience for the world’s best golfers by providing a fleet of courtesy luxury vehicles for all USGA Championships.

At each U.S. Open, Women’s Open and Senior Open, Lexus provides spectators with access to unique experiences ranging from the opportunity to have a picture taken with both the U.S. Open and U.S. Women’s Open trophies to autograph signings with legendary Lexus Golf Ambassadors in the Lexus Performance Drive Pavilion.

For more information on Lexus, visit http://www.lexus.com/

AmEx image
American Express
   

Together, American Express and the USGA have been providing world-class service to golf fans since 2006. By creating interactive U.S. Open experiences both onsite and online, American Express enhances the USGA’s effort to make the game more accessible and enjoyable for fans.

For more information on American Express visit www.americanexpress.com/entertainment


AmEx image