U.S. GIRLS' JUNIOR
Notable and Quotable from the Round of 64
July 26, 2017 | Augusta, Mo.
There are players from six countries among the final 32 players in the match-play bracket after Wednesday’s Round of 64. The United States has 23, while there are three from Chinese Taipei, two from Canada and the Republic of Korea, and one each from Malaysia and Thailand.
No. 3 seed Nicole Whiston, who defeated Maisie Filler, 2 up, on expectations: “I think I was a little bit nervous in the beginning because I felt like people were expecting a lot from me because I'm the No. 3 seed. I had a little trouble early, but after hole 8, I started getting settled down and I felt comfortable after that. I didn't play like I wanted, but I still got it done.”
No. 31 seed Kelly Su, who defeated Irene Kim in 22 holes to win a match in the Girls’ Junior for the first time in her third start: “It was a really, really exciting moment for me. Late in the match, I hit some bad drives, but I recovered and ended up squaring the match on No. 17. I came back after a few holes to win the match with a par.”
Su, on what she was going to do after winning in extra holes in stifling heat: “I'm happy with how I played, but I'm going back out to the range to work on my driver. I know what I'm doing wrong and I'm confident I can fix it by tonight and be back out there tomorrow.”
California has more players remaining than any other state with eight, followed by Florida with four, Arizona and Indiana with two each, and Arkansas, Georgia, Michigan, Nevada, New Jersey, North Carolina and South Carolina with one each.
Alexa Pano, who defeated Leila Dizon, 2 up, on being one of the two 12-year-olds in the field: “I try to look at it just I'm the same as any other competitor here. I’m the same height as most of them. I’ve been playing golf the same, maybe longer than most of them, so I consider myself the same level as them, and hopefully I can prove it by winning this week.”
Pano, who has grown 7 inches in the past year to 5-foot-8½, on her quality of play: “I never really got to a comfortable point in my round as I did the past few days. It was just a tough day. I kind of said to myself, if I don’t get it together, I’m going to lose this match. The way that I'm playing right now is not going to get it done.”
No. 60 seed Taylor Roberts, on her winning birdie on the 22nd hole against No. 5 seed Zoe Campos: “I had 142 out, and it's a perfect number for me, just 8-iron, and my caddie told me that I have nothing to lose, go right after it. Went right at it, maybe 5 feet, and I thought I missed [the putt] actually, but then it snuck in. I love match play. I just like the mindset.”
Age breakdown of the final 32: age 12 – 2 players; 13 – 1 player; 14 – 1 player; 15 – 7 players; 16 – 6 players; 17 – 10 players; 18 – 5 players. The average age is 16, and 11 players are competing in the championship for the first time.
No. 6 seed Mika Liu, on gritting out her 4-and-2 victory over Jayna Choi: “I think in the beginning, the heat got me a little bit, and I was just playing hole by hole and I was taking it pretty easy, but then I eventually worked it up to 3 up, and I just kept my round at pars and outlasted her. I think when I got to 3 up, I did notice a little bit how she was playing, but I didn't change my strategy.”
No. 45 seed Brooke Seay, who defeated Elle Nachmann in 19 holes, on making the cut in the U.S. Women’s Open two weeks ago: “I played one of the most challenging courses I’ve played, so coming into this week, the yardage is a lot shorter, the course is maybe playing just a bit easier. So I think taking that mentality that this is one step easier, that I've played a harder course, gives me a little more confidence. All of [the pros] said never get down on yourself because golf is a hard sport, and you’re never going to play well if you don't believe in yourself.”
No. 57 seed Annick Haczkiewicz, on defeating No. 8 seed Rachel Kuehn with a long birdie putt on the 19th hole: “I had just missed a putt on 18. It wasn’t a misread or nerves, I just literally didn't read it right. On the 19th hole, I hit my drive in the center, and Rachel hit her shot to the right into the rough, so my thoughts were, just get it on the green and two-putt. I was just hoping to get the speed and have a tap-in putt, and then I hit it perfectly and it just went in. I was so excited.”