Two players with Oklahoma ties and one of the stroke-play qualifying medalists were among the eight golfers to win a pair of matches on Thursday to reach Friday’s quarterfinals of the 2013 U.S. Women’s Amateur Public Links Championship.
Canadian Anne-Catherine Tanguay, a senior on the University of Oklahoma women’s golf team who plays regularly at the Jimmie Austin OU Golf Club, and Oklahoma State University sophomore Julie Yang joined University of Southern California All-American Doris Chen in the final eight. Chen, the 2010 U.S. Girls’ Junior champion who shared stroke-play medalist honors with USC teammate Annie Park, produced a pair of narrow victories on Thursday over Alyssa Ferrell (1 up) and Kris Yoo (19 holes).
Tanguay, one of three OU golfers to qualify for match play, edged Krista Puisite, of Latvia, 2 up, in the third round after knocking off Chaewon Park, of San Pedro, Calif., 5 and 3. The Korean-born Yang played a pair of extra-hole matches, going 20 holes to beat Jade Staggs, of Moore, Okla., and 19 holes to beat Kelly Shon, of Port Washington, N.Y.
The other quarterfinalists are Lauren Diaz Yi, of Thousand Oaks, Calif., Raychelle Santos, of La Quinta, Calif., Karen Chung, of Livingston, N.J., Cindy Ha, of Demarest, N.J., and Krystal Quihuis, of Tucson, Ariz.
Tanguay, 21, and Chen, 20, are the only non-teenagers remaining in the field.
The Women’s Amateur Public Links Championship began with two stroke-play qualifying rounds in which the lowest 64 scorers advanced to match play. The quarterfinal and semifinal rounds are scheduled for Friday, with the 36-hole championship match on Saturday.
The WAPL is one of 13 national championships conducted annually by the USGA, 10 of which are strictly for amateurs.
Warm and breezy conditions greeted the golfers in the morning. But as the day wore on, the winds gusted at speeds of up to 25 miles per hour, making club selection challenging.
Tanguay, who sees these conditions regularly, was more than happy to see the wind blow.
"It was just a perfect day," said Tanguay, who received congratulatory hugs from OU coaches and players at the 18th green after closing out Puisite. "I just know how to play the course in these conditions. That played to my advantage."
Tanguay said the momentum changed at the par-5 13th hole, when a loud cheer went up after she knocked her approach shot to 10 feet. The birdie putt gave her a 2-up lead. Puisite, who in 2012 became the first player from Latvia to play in a USGA championship (WAPL), holed a long birdie putt at 14 to trim the deficit in half, but Tanguay answered with a clutch two-putt on No. 15 for the winning par. She lost 16, halved 17 and took 18 when Puisite failed to convert a 15-foot par putt. Tanguay’s short par putt was conceded.
Tanguay draws Chen in one quarterfinal match. Chen, a 20-year-old from Bradenton, Fla., helped USC register a record 21-stroke win at last month’s NCAA Division I Women’s Championship. She was one of three current Trojans to make match play, but after defending champion Kyung Kim lost in the second round Thursday morning, is the last member of her team still in contention. Co-medalist Annie Park, the 2013 NCAA champion, lost in the first round on Wednesday.
Chen rallied from an early 3-down deficit to defeat Alyssa Ferrell in the second round, and in the afternoon, recorded a two-putt par on the 19th hole to beat Kris Yoo, who overshot the green with her approach and failed to convert a 24-foot par putt to extend the match.
"I’m tired, but I am not too exhausted," said Chen, who played 37 holes on Thursday. "My experience from this year [in the NCAAs] really helped me.
"Growing up in [Chinese Taipei], I know this stuff [wind]. It can be quite windy there in the summertime. You just have to calculate carefully in this stuff."
It’s been five years since Chung, 18, has advanced this far in a USGA championship. The incoming USC freshman was 13 when she reached the final of the 2008 U.S. Girls’ Junior, losing to Lexi Thompson, 5 and 4. But a hard-fought, come-from-behind 2-and-1 win over Casey Danielson set up a quarterfinal match Friday morning against the 17-year-old Yang. Yang has vast international experience, having competed in Ladies European Tour events as well as having spent part of her youth being schooled in Scotland. In 2011, she became the youngest winner of the Women’s Trans National Amateur. Yang enrolled at OSU this past winter and played the spring semester for the Cowgirls.
Chung showed her mettle against Danielson, an incoming Stanford University freshman, by winning four of the last five holes from No. 13 to close out her third-round match at No. 17.
"The wind was so hard, especially in my second 18," said Chung. "I just didn’t know what to hit into the greens. I was guessing. In these conditions, it was pretty tough to make birdies."
Quihuis, 16, had little trouble with the conditions in her second-round match Thursday morning, winning 8 and 6 over Louise Yi. When the wind picked up in the afternoon, she struggled to beat Briana Mao, 1 up, saying it was a two-club difference hitting into the wind. Quihuis was forced to club down one club on downwind holes.
"It’s a wonderful experience for me," said Quihuis, who missed the cut at the 2010 U.S. Girls’ Junior in her only previous USGA championship appearance. "As you keep advancing, the next matches get tougher and tougher. It’s just great to be here and I hope to keep advancing."
NORMAN, Okla. – Results from Thursday’s second and third rounds of match play at the 2013 U.S. Women’s Amateur Public Links Championship, being conducted at the 6,351-yard, par-72 Jimmie Austin OU Golf Club:
Round of 32
Raychelle Santos, La Quinta, Calif. (148) def. Ciera Min, Hilo Hawaii (153), 4 and 3
Chirapat Jao-Javanil, Thailand (147) def. Robynn Ree, Redondo Beach, Calif. (151), 4 and 3
Ember Schuldt, Sterling, Ill. (149) def. Mercedes Huarte, Argentina (152), 2 and 1
Cindy Ha, Demarest, N.J. (150) def. Grace Park, San Jose, Calif. (144), 1 up
Briana Mao, Folsom, Calif. (148) def. Kyung Kim, Chandler, Ariz. (142), 3 and 2
Krystal Quihuis, Tucson, Ariz. (152) def. Louise Yi, Cinnaminson, N.J. (151), 8 and 6
Lauren Diaz-Yi, Thousand Oaks, Calif. (148) def. Ericka Schneider, Bradenton, Fla. (153), 3 and 2
Grace Na, Alameda, Calif. (145) def. Lucy Nunn, Lawton, Okla. (150), 2 and 1
Doris Chen, Bradenton, Fla. (136) def. Allysa Ferrell, Edgerton, Wis. (149), 1 up
Kris Yoo, Schaumburg, Ill. (146) def. Allisen Corpuz, Honolulu, Hawaii (147), 5 and 4
Anne-Catherine Tanguay, Canada (144) def. Chaewon Park, San Pedro, Calif. (149), 5 and 3
Krista Puisite, Latvia (144) def. Kelsey Vines, San Antonio, Texas (147), 1 up
Casey Danielson, Osceola, Wis. (141) def. Aurora Kan, Avondale, Pa. (148), 3 and 1
Karen Chung, Livingtson, N.J. (146) def. Catherine Dolan, Ballwin, Mo. (151), 21 holes
Julie Yang, Stillwater, Okla. (142) def. Jade Staggs, Moore, Okla. (148), 20 holes
Kelly Shon, Port Washington, N.Y. (144) def. Whitney French, Corvallis, Ore. (147), 2 and 1
Round of 16
Raychelle Santos, La Quinta, Calif. (148) def. Chirapat Jao-Javanil, Thailand (147), 2 and 1
Cindy Ha, Demarest, N.J. (150) def. Ember Schuldt, Sterling, Ill. (149), 19 holes
Krystal Quihuis, Tucson, Ariz. (152) def. Briana Mao, Folsom, Calif. (148), 1 up
Lauren Diaz-Yi, Thousand Oaks, Calif. (148) def. Grace Na, Alameda, Calif. (145), 2 up
Doris Chen, Bradenton, Fla. (136) def. Kris Yoo, Schaumburg, Ill. (146), 19 holes
Anne-Catherine Tanguay, Canada (144) def. Krista Puisite, Latvia (144), 2 up
Karen Chung, Livingston, N.J. (146) def. Casey Danielson, Osceola, Wis. (141), 2 and 1
Julie Yang, Stillwater, Okla. (142) def. Kelly Shon, Port Washington, N.Y. (144), 19 holes
NORMAN, Okla. – Pairings and starting times for Friday’s quarterfinal matches at the 2013 U.S. Women’s Amateur Public Links Championship, being conducted at the 6,351-yard, par-72 Jimmie Austin OU Golf Club. (Note: semifinal matches will follow at 12:30 p.m.)
(All times CDT)
7:30 a.m. – Raychelle Santos, La Quinta, Calif. (148) vs. Cindy Ha, Demarest, N.J. (150)
7:40 a.m. – Krystal Quihuis, Tucson, Ariz. (152) vs. Lauren Diaz-Yi, Thousand Oaks, Calif. (148)
7:50 a.m. – Doris Chen, Bradenton, Fla. (136) vs. Anne-Catherine Tanguay, Canada (144)
8 a.m. – Karen Chung, Livingston, N.J. (146) vs. Julie Yang, Stillwater, Okla. (142)