Song Earns Low-Amateur Honors At Kraft 

April 5, 2010

Rancho Mirage, Calif. – Reigning U.S. Women’s Amateur and U.S. Women’s Amateur Public Links champion Jennifer Song carded a final-round 71 on Sunday to earn low-amateur honors by a stroke over 2008 U.S. Junior champion Alexis Thompson at the Kraft Nabisco Championship, the first women’s professional major championship of the season.

Song, one of seven golfers to win multiple USGA championships in a single season, was tied for fourth place overall early in Saturday’s third round, but made seven bogeys over the last 12 holes and finished with a disappointing 4-over-par 76 on the 6,702-yard, par-72 Mission Hills Country Club Dinah Shore Tournament Course. The 1-under score on Sunday was Song’s third 71 of the tournament and left the 20-year-old University of Southern California sophomore with a 72-hole total of 1-over-par 289.

Song was the low amateur at the 2009 U.S. Women’s Open (T-13) at Saucon Valley Country Club and also shared that honor at the 2007 Women’s Open at Pine Needles Lodge and Golf Club. Song headed immediately back to USC on Sunday night, where she had two midterm exams on Monday.

Thompson, 15, of Coral Springs, Fla., who shared low-amateur honors in her Kraft debut last year with two-time WAPL champion Tiffany Joh, finished with a 71 for a 290 total. She also had rounds of 74-72-73. In 2007, Thompson, at 12 years, 5, months, became the youngest qualifier in Women’s Open history. That same year, she was the youngest quarterfinalist in U.S. Women’s Amateur history.

Yani Tseng of Chinese Taipei, the 2004 U.S. Women’s Amateur Public Links champion, won the Kraft by one stroke over Suzann Pettersen at 13-under 275. Tseng shot a final-round 68.

Two other amateurs also made the cut, which came at 6-over 150.

 Jennifer Johnson, an 18-year-old Arizona State University freshman from nearby La Quinta who was the runner-up to Song at the 2009 U.S. Women’s Amateur, shot a 79 (305), while 17-year-old Jessica Korda from Bradenton, Fla., who posted final-round 69s in each of the last two U.S. Women’s Opens, had a 76 (298).

Korda and Song helped the USA win the Copa de las Americas competition this past January in Argentina.

All four players are prime candidates for the 2010 USA Curtis Cup Team, which is expected to be selected after this week’s Masters.  The Match will be contested June 11-13 at Essex County Club in Manchester-by-the-Sea, Mass. The USA has won the last six over its Great Britain and Ireland counterparts.

The other three amateurs invited to the 2010 Kraft – Candace Schepperle, Cydney Clanton and Kimberly Kim – also have hopes of making the USA Curtis Cup Team, but missed the cut. Clanton, a junior at Auburn University, carded a second-round 80 for a 155 total.

Kim, who in 2006 at the age of 14 became the youngest U.S. Women’s Amateur champion in history, had a 75 (156), while Auburn senior Candace Schepperle had a 76 (155). The Hawaiian-born Kim is completing her freshman year at the University of Denver.

Story written by USGA communications staff writer David Shefter.

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