Last Updated on Sunday, 08 July 2012 10:57
Saturday, 07 July 2012 16:32
Christina Lake, British Columbia (BRITISH COLUMBIA GOLF)-Team Canada member Christine Wong set a 72-hole record score to capture her second British Columbia Women's Amateur title at Christina Lake Golf Club.
Coming off her third-round course record seven-under 65, Wong closed out her impressive victory with a two-under-par 70, 274 total (70-69-65-70-274), the lowest the Championship has witnessed since it went to a four-round format back in 2006.
The previous record was a 275 total held by Kira Meixner in 2008.
A native of Richmond and member at Quilchena G&CC, Wong staved off unrelenting pressure at the onset by Soo-Bin Kim of Port Coquitlam who just wouldn't seem to give up on the title.
Going into the day, Wong knew she had to remain poised and in a groove if she wanted to take the crown.
"My whole routine from when I woke up and got to the course was exactly the same as it has been all week although I was really nervous going into the final round of the Amateur with the lead."
"I struggled with my game on the first six holes, making two birdies then a double bogey. I was obviously very nervous but was able to get it back after that."
Her lead looked like it was beginning to slip, not because of poor play, but thanks to birdies from Kim on holes 4, 6, 7 and 10, brining it to as little as three strokes.
"Soo-Bin [Kim] is an excellent player, a clutch player and was able to get a few birdies and narrow my lead, which made me even more nervous," said Wong. "I had to tell myself that I still had a lead at that point."
"Right when she got [the lead] to three, I was able to make three birdies in a row and get it back. I was more myself on the back nine."
Her three birdies in a row on holes 11, 12 and 13 added to Wong's impressive domination of the back nine at Christina Lake GC, which saw her go a total of 11-under par on the inward half over the four days of the Championship.
Wong would close out the final five holes with four pars and a lone bogey on the par 5, 430 yard 15th where she was admittedly feeling the heat of the lead and had to calm herself down.
"I looked down at my right hand on the 15th and it was shaking like I have never seen it shake before, like I couldn't even stop it" laughed Wong. "I told myself that I have been in this situation before and to simply get on the green, two putt and move on to the next hole."
Wong was lucky to have had the previous experience of winning, which she did so back in 2010 by claiming her first Amateur Championship, as the course was set up very difficult on the final day. "The tee boxes were moved back and the pins tucked in the corners. The course was set up today harder than any other day this week."
"I was able to hit it in the right places when I needed to and made some key putts to win the Championship."
When asked about the win, Wong could only compliment her friend. "I really look up to Soo-Bin because we are good friends and she is such a good player. I guess I am just proud of both of us."
While Wong and Kim were duking it out for top spot, systematically climbing the leaderboard was Megan Osland of Kelowna, who closed out the Championship with an impressive final two-round line of 66-70, 281 total (72-73-66-70-281).
At one point, Osland was tied with Kim for second thanks to an impressive chip-in eagle on the par 5, 430-yard 15th hole.
The race for second however didn't last long as Kim birdied the par 4, 375-yard 17th and Osland bogeyed. With a final hole par, Kim's four-round-total was brought to 278 (70-70-71-67-278) including a days-best final round five-under-par 67, good enough for solo second with Osland finishing solo third.
As a result of their great performances, Wong, Kim and Osland will now represent British Columbia on Team B.C. at the Royale Cup Canadian Women's Amateur Championship to be held at Lethbridge Country Club in Lethbridge, Alberta on July 24-27, 2012.
Wong's game plan going into nationals is pretty simple, "Go out and play like I did this week."
Rounding out the top five was Team Canada Development Squad member Taylor Kim of Surrey (71-73-71-70-285) and recently crowned Mid-Amateur champion Kyla Inaba of Kelowna (69-71-74-71-285) who both finished tied for 4th.
First round leader A. Ram Choi of Surrey finished the Championship with a respectable two-under-par 286 total (67-73-75-71-286) and defending champion Christina Proteau of Port Alberni rounded out those finishing under par with a one-under-par 287 total (71-71-72-73-287).
Top 10 Finishers - Final Results (Christina Lake GC, Par 72 6,189 Yds)
1. Christine Wong, Richmond, B.C. *70-69-65-70-274 (-14)
2. Soo-Bin Kim, Port Coquitlam, B.C. *70-70-71-67-278 (-10)
3. Megan Osland, Kelowna, B.C. *72-73-66-70-281 (-7)
T4. Taylor Kim, Surrey, B.C., *71-73-71-70-285 (-3)
T4. Kyla Inaba, Kelowna, B.C., *69-71-74-71-285 (-3)
6. A Ram Choi, Surrey, *67-73-75-71-286 (-2)
7. Christina Proteau, Port Alberni, B.C., *71-71-72-73-287 (-1)
8. Amanda Baker, Nanaimo, B.C., *69-73-71-75-288 (E)
9. Anica Yoo, Port Coquitlam, B.C. *72-73-72-72-289 (+1)
10. Brooklyn Kraakman, Deroche, B.C., *74-75-73-69-291 (+3)
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