One thing is for sure about the ANNIKA Invitational, it certainly isn’t without its dramatic endings.
With 72 of the world’s top junior women’s golfers, including 16 of the top 25 girls in the Rolex AJGA Rankings, competing for one of junior golf’s most coveted titles at Eagle Creek Golf Club in Orlando, Florida, the fireworks and Stunning finishes are the rule rather than the exception.
Such was the case on Tuesday, when Ashleen Kaur, Katie Li and Alice Ziyi Zhao staged a memorable nine-hole duel that wasn’t settled until the final hole, when Kaur opened the par-5 18th hole for a one-shot victory.
Zhao, a 13-year-old who took medalist honors at last summer’s US Women’s Amateur in Chambers Bay, took a one-shot lead in the final round and increased her lead to two at the turnaround after a three-shot streak. consecutive birdies. her in holes 6-8.
But with three holes remaining, Kaur found herself tied with Duke commit and four-time Rolex Junior All-American Katie Li at 14-under while Zhao trailed just one.
Zhao gained a share of the lead with a birdie at 16, but when she and Kaur bogeyed at 17, Li stood on the 18th tee with a one-shot lead.
After using his length to hit 18 of 489 yards on two, Kaur exhausted his 40-foot putt for an eagle and a final-round 69 to take the title. His 54-hole score of 15-under 204 set a new tournament scoring record by three strokes and gave him a one-shot victory over Li and Zhao.
“It means a lot to compete in this event hosted by Annika,” said Kaur, who was making her first ANNIKA Invitational debut. “She was a huge inspiration to me growing up, so to compete here and win is amazing.”
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The story originally appeared on GolfWeek