U.S. WOMEN'S AMATEUR FOUR-BALL
Superal, Del Rosario Post 12-Under 132 for Medalist Honors
May 22, 2016 | Bowling Green, Fla.
By Christina Lance, USGA
Pauline Del Rosario and 2014 U.S. Girls’ Junior champion Princess Mary Superal, both of the Philippines, returned a two-day total of 12-under-par 132 and earned medalist honors in the 2016 U.S. Women’s Amateur Four-Ball Championship, being conducted on 6,216-yard, par-72 Streamsong Blue at Streamsong Resort.
Sierra Brooks, the 2015 U.S. Women’s Amateur runner-up, and 2014 U.S. Women’s Amateur champion Kristen Gillman, who held the lead following Saturday’s first round, finished second at 10-under 134.
The 2016 U.S. Women’s Amateur Four-Ball Championship consists of 36 holes of stroke play followed by five rounds of match play. The championship is scheduled to conclude with an 18-hole final on Wednesday, May 25.
Del Rosario, 17, and Superal, 19, returned a bogey-free 66 on Sunday to go with their 66 on Saturday. Superal punctuated their round by hitting a fairway bunker shot from 120 yards onto the green at the par-4 18th. Her ball took a lucky ricochet off fellow competitor Lesli Hopping’s ball, leaving Superal with a 6-foot putt, which she converted for their sixth birdie of the round.
“Princess’ last putt was very important,” said De Rosario, an incoming freshman at the University of Kansas. “We wanted to shoot at least 6 under today.”
“(Going bogey-free) was our goal today,” added Superal, who plans to turn professional later this year.
Del Rosario and Superal’s 132 is the U.S. Women’s Amateur Four-Ball record for low 36-hole score, breaking the mark of 133 by Kendall Griffin and Athena Yang in last year’s inaugural championship at Bandon Dunes Golf Resort. This year, Griffin and Yang, who were tied for second after a bogey-free 66 on Saturday, stumbled to a second-round 75 and fell into a tie for 19th at 3-under 141. The top 32 of the 64 competing sides advanced to Monday’s first round of match play.
Gillman, 18, of Austin, Texas, converted eight birdies on Saturday and continued her hot play on Sunday. Her eagle on the par-4 sixth, a holed wedge shot from 45 yards, set the tone for another successful day.
“We said, let’s just have fun with this,” said Gillman, who will enroll at the University of Alabama in the fall. “We’re both going to hit driver and see where it goes. I just landed it short and it rolled dead center into the hole. It was pretty awesome.”
Gillman added another birdie at the par-5 ninth, while Brooks, 17, of Orlando, Fla., contributed her own birdie at the par-5 17th. Sunday brought Brooks a much-welcomed change of pace following her frustrating round on Saturday, when she struggled throughout the day and did not contribute to the team’s score.
“On the back nine especially, I started figuring things out,” said Brooks, a member of the 2016 USA Curtis Cup Team and an incoming freshman at Wake Forest University. “It’s good, so I’m excited for match play now.”
Xinying Wang, 17, of the People’s Republic of China, and Katherine Zhu, 16, of San Jose, Calif., round out the top three sides at 8-under 136.
Four-time U.S. Women’s Mid-Amateur champion Meghan Stasi, 37, of Fort Lauderdale, Fla., and Dawn Woodard, 41, of Greenville, S.C., tied for ninth at 5-under 139. They are one of four mid-amateur or senior sides to advance to match play. Additionally, Lauren Greenlief, 25, the 2015 U.S. Women’s Mid-Amateur champion, birdied the first playoff hole to advance with her 23-year-old partner Alexandra Austin.
The cut came at 1-under 143, with a 4-for-3 playoff for the final match-play berths. Along with Greenlief and Austin, Waverly Whiston’s birdie on the first playoff hole earned her and sister Nicole a berth in match play. The remaining two sides – Abbey Daniel and Julia Johnson, and Mikayla Fitzpatrick and Alisa Snider – halved three additional holes with pars before play was suspended due to darkness. The playoff will resume at Monday at 7 a.m. on No. 18.
Notables to miss the cut include 2004 U.S. Senior Women’s Amateur champion Carolyn Creekmore and LeeAnn Fairlie (147); 2015 U.S. Senior Women’s Amateur runner-up Pamela Kuong and Susan Curtin (151); and 2015 U.S. Women’s Mid-Amateur semifinalist Christina Proteau and Shawn Farmer-Sese (157).
Mika Liu and Rinko Mitsunaga, winners of the inaugural U.S. Women’s Amateur Four-Ball Championship in 2015, are not in the field this year.
The U.S. Women’s Amateur Four-Ball is one of 13 national championships conducted annually by the United States Golf Association, 10 of which are strictly for amateurs. Entries for the 2017 championship, which will be conducted at The Dunes Golf & Beach Club in Myrtle Beach, S.C., are available at champs.usga.org.
Christina Lance is the manager of championship communications for the USGA. Email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.