Hye-Jin Choi celebrates an early birdie on Sunday (USGA)
BEDMINSTER, NJ (July 16, 2017) - It was a big ask. At 17-years-old, Hye-Jin Choi
entered the final round one shot behind. Midway through that round, she held a 2-shot advantage. And while she eventually saw her hopes of a win fly into the water right of the short par-3 16th hole, Choi has accomplished something not done since Brittany Lang and Morgan Pressel tied for second in 2005.
"Today I was hitting the ball perfectly, Choi told Fox Sports through an interpreter. "On No. 16 I tried to hit it even more perfect, and that's what led to the missed shot."
The Korean golfer -- who came over with hopes of just making the cut -- displayed tremendous length and ball striking throughout the tournament, barely missing a fairway in the final round. Had her putter been hot, she could have really gone low.
Choi, 17, is now the No. 1 ranked player in the Golfweek/AmateurGolf.com Women's Rankings
A blow up triple at the last dropped a disappointed Shanshan Feng (who was in solo second starting the 18th hole) down the leaderboard, but Choi was already in close for birdie and likely would have gotten a tie for second at the worst given the long and left third shot by Feng.
Sung-Hyun Park finished 67-67 over the weekend to get to 11-under and win the title by two shots. She played nearly flawless golf down the stretch, all the way down to an impressive chip shot to within inches after missing the green long and left on No. 18. Playing from the closely-mown area with water lurking past the flag, Park hit a perfect bump-and-run to close out the victory.
"My caddie assured me I had played the shot [successfully] before," Park told Fox Sports. "That calmed me down."
Best Finishes by an Amateur in the U.S. Women's Open Since 1967
Win, Catherine Lacoste (1967)
T2, Hye-Jin Choi (2017)
T2, Brittany Lang (2005)
T2, Morgan Pressel (2005)
2, Jenny Chuasiriporn (1998)
T2 Nancy Lopez (1975)
ABOUT AMATEUR HYE-HIN CHOI
Choi has played in several professional tournaments in the last two years, both on the LPGA Tour and the Ladies European Tour. Coming into the week, her best finish on the LPGA Tour was a tie for seventh at the 2017 Australian Women's Open; on the LET she was the runner-up in the New Zealand Women's Open last year.
Four other amateurs made the cut.
(71) finished T21 at even par.
of Lexington, SC and the University of Alabama shot 75 to finish T41
(76, T60) round out the group.
ABOUT THE U.S. Women's Open
The U.S. Women's Open is the biggest tournament in
women's golf and one of 14 national
championships conducted by the USGA. The
event is open to any female who has a USGA
Handicap Index not exceeding 4.4.
View Complete Tournament Information