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Brook holds fast; wins LPGA LOTTE

 

Brooke Henderson wins 2018 LOTTE Championship

After nearly letting it slip away from her at the at Ko Olina Golf Club in Oahu, Hawaii on Friday, Canada's Brooke Henderson came back looking rock-solid on Saturday to win the LPGA LOTTE championship going away.

The 20-year-old from Ontario closed with a 3-under 69 and a 12-under 276 total that got her over the finish line four shots clear of her leading pursuer, Azahara Munoz (67) of Spain.

Henderson, who has now won six LPGA Tour titles include a major at the Women's US PGA Championship as a teenager in 2016, looked as if she may have blown herself out of contention when she bogeyed the last three holes of the third round on Friday.

She did manage to cling to the lead, but it was down to just one shot when she teed off in Saturday's final round.

Any dent that may have existed in her psychological armour had been mended, however, and after two birdies on the front nine, she had once more widened the gap between herself and the chasing pack.

She did stumble once more, but only briefly.

Her bogey at the par-3 12th was promptly patched over with two more birdies, the first on the 14th hole, the second on the 16th where the memories of a double-bogey 24 hours earlier seemed to strengthen her resolve rather than weaken it and after that there was no catching her as she marched confidently on to her convincing victory.

Munoz, whose 5-under 67 on Saturday was to lift her out of the pack, was another who played some near flawless golf after started the day six strokes off the pace.

She nailed her first birdie on the par-5 5th hole and her 2nd at the 9th and that took her to two-under at the turn.

She posted back-to-back birdies at the 11th and 12th and then drained her 5th birdie on the 14th.

She was going like a train - but then she ran out of steam, could only make pars on the last four holes and in the end, her 8-under tally was never going to be enough.

FINAL SCORES
(Par 72)

276 Brooke Henderson (CAN) 68 66 73 69
280 Azahara Munoz (ESP) 74 70 69 67
281 Feng Shanshan (CHN) 67 69 74 71, Park In bee (KOR) 69 69 71 72, Ariya Jutanugarn (THA) 73 69 70 69
282 Chien Pei yun (TPE) 74 71 67 70, Lindy Duncan (USA) 70 68 74 70, Lizette Salas (USA) 69 71 70 72
283 Daniela Iacobelli (USA) 73 68 70 72
284 Moriya Jutanugarn (THA) 72 68 72 72
285 Pannarat Thanapolboonyaras (THA) 75 72 68 70, Michelle Wie (USA) 72 73 69 71, Ji Eun-hee (KOR) 69 72 73 71, Cydney Clanton (USA) 74 69 70 72, Kim Ji-hyun (KOR) 71 70 71 73
286 Mariajo Uribe 72 68 74 72, Lee Jeon-geun (KOR) 76 70 67 73, Mo Martin (USA) 69 67 72 78, Lydia Ko (NZL) 76 71 70 70, Kim Sei-young (KOR) 74 69 74 70, Kang Hae-ji (KOR) 68 71 73 73, Nasa Hataoka (JAP) 72 69 68 78.

For betting results visit BetWay

Neville Leck

Written by neville@golfweather.com.