Playoffs Decide Titles At World Junior Girls Golf Championship

Team Spain (Photo: Joe McLean)

OTTAWA (Golf Canada/Golf Ontario) – Few could have predicted the wild finish that took place on Friday for the World Junior Girls Championship at The Marshes Golf Club.

In thrilling fashion, the Spanish team fired a collective 4-under par (140) to erase an eight-stroke deficit, forcing a playoff with the Korean squad. As light rain began to fall, both teams headed back to the par-4 18th in pairs to conduct the first playoff in World Junior Girls Championship history.

The Spaniards kept their foot on the gas, with two of the first three team members making birdie on the hole to put the trio at 2 under. The Korean team was then forced to hole out for eagle to continue the match, but their approach missed the green to the right.

“If I would not have made that putt, my teammates might not have been as motivated as they were,” said Elena Arias, the first Spanish team member to birdie the playoff. “I just hit the putt like the other times I had played the hole. It just looked so clear to me and went in but I was so nervous.”

Dimana Viudes followed in the second playoff group, capping her 3-under bogey-free round with a birdie of her own.

“It is like Elena said, her putt really gave me confidence because knowing that we already had a birdie was a great start,” said Viudes, who finished in fourth place individually. “I was very nervous but at the same time calm as well. I was just lucky enough to pull off the shot.”

The win marks the first World Junior Girls Championship medal for Team Spain, which is something not lost on the team’s coach.

“This is a dream come true. To beat a strong team like Korea is something else,” said Nacho Gervas, Team Spain coach. “They are so strong that at times you feel like you are playing for second place. I told them (Spain) they had the game to do well today and if we played our game you never know what can happen.”

Republic of Korea’s Seo-yun Kwon, the 54-hole individual leader, headed into the final round with a two-stroke advantage over Italy’s Alessia Nobilio. Kwon had built a clear advantage on the day before running into trouble on the par-5 14th with a triple-bogey.

Nobilio took advantage of Kwon’s mishap by making birdie on the 14th to briefly hold a one-stroke lead, until giving a stroke back on the next hole. The pair took scores of 9 under to the last hole, forcing another playoff to be commenced after the team event was decided.

With Korea losing the team event, Kwon was determined to come out on top. The 16-year-old missed the green on her approach but went up-and-down for par, beating out Nobilio who slipped with a bogey.

“At first I was angry with myself because I was leading by a few strokes and made one mistake,” said Kwon. “Even though I won the individual medal, I am a little disappointed in myself because if I had done a little more, we could have won the team championship so it is bitter sweet. This is my first win at an international tournament so right now I am so happy.”

Rounding out the team medallists was the trio from Sweden, who finished the tournament at 9 under par, five strokes shy of Spain and Korea. Spain’s Blanca Fernández took home the individual bronze medal, posting a final-round 71 to close the tournament at 7 under par.

Céleste Dao from Notre-Dame-de-L’Île-Perrot, Que., finished as the low Canadian with a share of 24th place at 6 over for the tournament.

In 2018, the World Junior Girls Championship will return to the Ottawa area at Camelot Golf and Country Club next September.

Photo Gallery – All Images by Bernard Brault/ Golf Canada

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Team Leaderboard

Pos Team Today Thru Total R1 R2 R3 R4 Total
1 Spain Spain -4 F -14 142 141 139 140 562
2 Korea, Republic Of Republic of Korea +4 F -14 134 138 142 148 562
3 Sweden Sweden -3 F -9 140 142 144 141 567
T4 France France -6 F -8 141 143 146 138 568
T4 United States United States of America -1 F -8 135 144 146 143 568
6 Germany Germany -1 F -4 141 140 148 143 572
7 Denmark Denmark E F -3 140 142 147 144 573
8 Italy Italy +5 F -2 142 142 141 149 574
9 England England +3 F +1 145 142 143 147 577
10 Switzerland Switzerland +5 F +8 145 146 144 149 584
T11 Ireland Ireland +3 F +9 148 140 150 147 585
T11 Philippines Philippines +2 F * +9 146 142 151 146 585
13 Czech Republic Czech Republic +7 F +14 140 150 149 151 590
14 Mexico Mexico +10 F * +22 145 147 152 154 598
15 Chinese Taipei Chinese Taipei +9 F * +23 148 146 152 153 599
16 Australia Australia +6 F * +24 142 152 156 150 600
T17 Belgium Belgium +7 F * +25 147 148 155 151 601
T17 China People Republic of China +3 F * +25 155 150 149 147 601
19 Canada Canada 1 +8 F * +30 150 146 158 152 606
20 Canada Canada 2 +7 F * +33 147 155 156 151 609

Individual Leaderboard

Pos Player Today Thru Total R1 R2 R3 R4 Total
1 Korea, Republic Of Seo-yun Kwon  Republic of Korea (p) +2 F -9 65 70 70 74 279
2 Italy Alessia Nobilio  Italy E F -9 68 71 68 72 279
3 Spain Blanca Fernández  Spain -1 F -7 71 71 68 71 281
4 Spain Dimana Viudes  Spain -3 F -5 71 70 73 69 283
T5 France Pauline Roussin Bouchard  France -5 F -3 70 77 71 67 285
T5 Germany Esther Henseleit  Germany -2 F -3 71 68 76 70 285
T7 England Lily May Humphreys  England E F -2 71 71 72 72 286
T7 Sweden Beatrice Wallin  Sweden -1 F -2 71 72 72 71 286
9 Germany Alexandra Försterling  Germany +1 F -1 70 72 72 73 287
T10 Philippines Harmie Nicole Constantino  Philippines +1 F * E 73 72 70 73 288
T10 Denmark Sofie K. Nielsen  Denmark E F E 74 71 71 72 288
T10 France Mathilde Claisse  France -1 F E 71 71 75 71 288
T10 Sweden Amanda Linnér  Sweden -2 F E 71 73 74 70 288
T10 United States Gina Kim  United States E F E 67 76 73 72 288
T10 Sweden Linn Grant  Sweden +5 F E 69 70 72 77 288
T10 Korea, Republic Of Yunji Jeong  Republic of Korea +4 F E 69 71 72 76 288
T17 Switzerland Elena Moosmann  Switzerland +1 F +1 70 76 70 73 289
T17 Czech Republic Hana Ryskova  Czech Republic +2 F +1 68 71 76 74 289
T17 United States Erica Shepherd  United States +3 F +1 68 72 74 75 289
20 Korea, Republic Of Hae-Ran Ryu  Republic of Korea +2 F +3 75 68 74 74 291
T21 Belgium Clarisse Louis  Belgium E F * +4 71 74 75 72 292
T21 United States Jennifer Chang  United States -1 F +4 76 72 73 71 292
23 Denmark Cecilie Nielsen  Denmark E F +5 70 73 78 72 293
T24 Ireland Annabel Wilson  Ireland +5 F +6 72 67 78 77 294
T24 England Annabell Fuller  England +4 F +6 76 71 71 76 294
T24 Canada Céleste Dao  Canada 1 +2 F * +6 74 70 76 74 294
27 Switzerland Victoria Monod  Switzerland +4 F +7 75 70 74 76 295
T28 Denmark Karen Fredgaard  Denmark +7 F +8 70 71 76 79 296
T28 China Jingwen Zhang  People’s Republic of China +2 F * +8 76 74 72 74 296
T30 Canada Euna Han  Canada 2 -3 F * +9 75 77 76 69 297
T30 Italy Caterina Don  Italy +5 F +9 74 73 73 77 297
T30 Italy Alessandra Fanali  Italy +6 F +9 74 71 74 78 297
33 Ireland Lauren Crowley Walsh  Ireland -2 F +10 76 73 79 70 298
T34 Chinese Taipei Kuan-Yu Lin  Chinese Taipei +6 F * +11 74 72 75 78 299
T34 Spain Elena Arias  Spain +4 F +11 74 78 71 76 299
T36 Mexico Ximena González  Mexico +5 F * +12 78 69 76 77 300
T36 England Isobel Wardle  England +3 F +12 74 75 76 75 300
38 Mexico Cory López  Mexico +5 F * +13 70 78 76 77 301
39 Chinese Taipei Jo-Hua Hung  Chinese Taipei +4 F * +14 74 74 78 76 302
40 Germany Paula Kirner  Germany +1 F +15 78 75 77 73 303
T41 Australia Alizza Hetherington  Australia +2 F * +16 76 76 78 74 304
T41 Australia Stephanie Kyriacou  Australia +4 F * +16 73 77 78 76 304
T41 Australia Gabriela Ruffels  Australia +6 F * +16 69 76 81 78 304
44 Czech Republic Sarah Hricikova  Czech Republic +5 F +18 72 79 78 77 306
T45 Czech Republic Sara Kouskova  Czech Republic +8 F +19 74 80 73 80 307
T45 Philippines Junia Louise Gabasa  Philippines +1 F * +19 83 70 81 73 307
T45 France Gala Dumez  France +8 F +19 78 72 77 80 307
T48 Switzerland Chiara Tamburlini  Switzerland +4 F +20 75 77 80 76 308
T48 Chinese Taipei Hui-Wen Chiu  Chinese Taipei +5 F * +20 78 76 77 77 308
50 China Tian Lyu  People’s Republic of China +1 F * +22 79 78 80 73 310
T51 Mexico María Fernanda Martínez  Mexico +5 F * +24 75 80 80 77 312
T51 Belgium Margaux Appart  Belgium +7 F * +24 76 74 83 79 312
T51 Canada Ellie Szeryk  Canada 1 +6 F * +24 76 76 82 78 312
T54 China Quan Ronghui  People’s Republic of China +9 F * +25 79 76 77 81 313
T54 Canada Emily Zhu  Canada 2 +10 F * +25 72 78 81 82 313
56 Ireland Mairead Martin  Ireland +9 F +31 85 81 72 81 319
T57 Philippines Kristine Torralba  Philippines +10 F * +37 73 86 84 82 325
T57 Belgium Elsie Verhoeven  Belgium +14 F * +37 78 81 80 86 325
59 Canada Monet Chun  Canada 1 +21 F * +58 79 92 82 93 346