Rose Zhang is first to win back-to-back NCAA Girls’s Golf Championships

Sophomore Rose Zhang gained her second particular person NCAA Girls’s Golf Championship on Monday. Zhang grew to become the primary girl to win a number of — and consecutive — nationwide titles, and she or he tied the NCAA report for season wins. On the Grayhawk Golf Membership in Scottsdale, Ariz., Zhang shot a near-flawless 4-under par 68, successful the four-round event by one stroke over USC’s Catherine Park and San Jose State’s Lucia Lopez-Ortega.

Within the closing spherical, Zhang didn’t card a single bogey. Alongside the way in which, she displayed the exemplary swing aircraft and tempo, consistency, placing stroke and course administration which have helped place her among the many greatest ladies’s amateurs ever to carry a golf membership.

The day had its share of drama. The spherical started with Park at 10-under par, two forward of Lopez-Ortega and 4 forward of Zhang. After the seventh gap, nevertheless, Zhang had narrowed the hole to 1, birdieing holes 4, 6 and seven to place her at -9. The birdie stretch was highlighted by Zhang’s method to inside six inches on the par-4 sixth and her wedge to inside 4 ft on the par-5 seventh. Within the meantime, Lopez-Ortega, starting her spherical on the tenth gap, shot one underneath par on her opening 9 to tie Zhang.

On the second 9, Zhang edged forward whereas her opponents faltered. After birdieing the par-4 twelfth to achieve -11, Park bogeyed two of her subsequent 4 holes as her lack of pace management on the greens yielded two three-putts. As Park was struggling, Zhang birdied the par-5 No. 11, sinking a difficult downhill left-to-right putt to take action. Zhang was now 10-under par, one stroke in entrance of Park. At practically the identical time, Lopez-Ortega pulled even with Zhang by birdieing the par-3 fifth (her 14th gap of the day). However the tie was short-lived. Lopez-Ortega managed to save lots of par on gap No. 6 however then bogeyed the par-5 seventh after an errant drive. She bogeyed the following gap by blasting her birdie putt 5 ft by the outlet and lacking the come-backer. Lopez-Ortega was now at -8, one stroke behind Park and two behind Zhang.

Thereafter, Zhang continued to play the regular, positional golf that’s her trademark. She repeatedly hit her drives with pinpoint accuracy — Zhang missed just one fairway your entire spherical — and her adroit lag placing resulted in lots of no-stress pars. Zhang encountered some issue on the par-4 seventeenth when she hit her method over the inexperienced and confronted a slick downhiller. However, she deftly chipped the ball to inside two ft for her par.

As she approached the tee on the par-5 18th, Zhang was 10-under par, one stroke away from each Park and Lopez-Ortega. Park practically had tied the rating, lacking a brief birdie putt on No. 18. Lopez-Ortega birdied her closing gap, placing her at -9 as effectively.

However Zhang methodically shut the door. Needing solely a par, she hit a near-perfect drive into the golf green, and with Cardinal coach Anne Walker’s steering, Zhang selected to put up from 199 yards, hit a wedge to the inexperienced after which two putt for the straightforward par and the Championship.

In simply two years on The Farm, Zhang occupies a rarefied place in Stanford’s wealthy golf custom. Her 12 profession wins (in 20 occasions) set a brand new Cardinal golf report, eclipsing the 11 wins of Tiger Woods (26 occasions), Patrick Rogers (35 occasions) and Maverick McNealy (45 occasions). Zhang’s victory was the eighth in 10 occasions this season, tying her with Lorena Ochoa and Renee Heiken for essentially the most single-season ladies’s collegiate golf wins and tying Tiger Woods for essentially the most single-season wins in Stanford golf historical past. Zhang’s twelfth profession win tied Ochoa for essentially the most in PAC-12 ladies’s golf. On Tuesday, Zhang was named the winner of the celebrated Anika Award, introduced yearly to the highest feminine U.S. collegiate golfer. Zhang, who additionally gained the award final 12 months, grew to become Stanford’s third consecutive winner, a streak junior Rachel Heck started in 2021.

Along with Zhang, different Cardinal gamers shined brightly at Grayhawk. Junior Sadie Englemann posted her second 3-under 69 of the week to complete at 5-under par, tied for tenth place. Englemann earned her seventh top-10 end in 11 occasions this season. Freshman Megha Ganne (1-under par) and Kelly Xu (even-par) each completed within the prime 30, inserting tied for twenty first and tied for twenty eighth.