Alabama's Gillman wins first pro title at JLPGA event
22 Jul 2018
by Julie Williams of AmateurGolf.com
see also: Kristen Gillman Rankings
Kristen Gillman (Alabama Athletics photo)
OTSU, SHIGA PREFECTURE, JAPAN (July 22, 2018) – Kristen Gillman
has had just about every experience you could ask for as an amateur golfer. She has won the U.S. Women’s Amateur (2014), played in LPGA major championships, gone undefeated in a Curtis Cup, played for an NCAA team title and won a high school state championship.
On Sunday, the 19-year-old Gillman, a rising junior at Alabama, bagged her first professional title on the Japanese LPGA. Gillman won the Century 21 Ladies Golf Tournament at Seta Golf Course by four shots.
Gillman, coming off a U.S. win at the Palmer Cup, entered the final round in Japan trailing by one shot. She birdied the first hole on Sunday and took off from there.
Six birdies plus two bogeys followed as Gillman put together a final-round 5-under 67 to finish three rounds at 17 under. Gillman was four shots ahead of runners-up Ayako Kimura and Sakura Koiwai. Only two players scored lower than Gillman in the final round: Mikiko Higa and Matsuda Suzuhide had 6-under 66.
Before Gillman teed it up at the U.S. Women’s Open earlier this summer, Alabama head women’s coach Mic Potter noted that her game was ready for the professional level. She finished T-27 that week.
“I think she has a tremendous belief in herself and the way she does things,” Potter said of Gillman’s success.
So far, it’s working.