Dream ends for Maryland amateur Chuasiriporn falls to Pak in playoff at U.S. Women's Open

July 07, 1998|By Don Markus | Don Markus,SUN STAFF

KOHLER, Wis. -- Jenny Chuasiriporn came here last week hoping to make the cut and become the low amateur at the U.S. Women's Open for the second straight year.

Instead, the 20-year-old golfer from Timonium nearly made history.

Chuasiriporn, a senior at Duke University, built an early four-shot lead on Se Ri Pak of South Korea before losing their 18-hole sudden-death playoff on the second extra hole yesterday at the Blackwolf Run Golf Course.

A triple-bogey six on the par-3 sixth hole by Chuasiriporn had closed the deficit for Pak, who then made three birdies on the back nine and another on the par-4 11th hole to prevent Chuasiriporn from becoming the first amateur in 31 years to win the Open.

"I knew the sudden-death playoff was going to be pretty close. I knew it was going to come down to one putt that one of us was going to make sooner or later," said Chuasiriporn.

It was a putt that Chuasiriporn missed on the 18th green, a 12-footer for par, that kept the door open for Pak, who went on to win her second major of the year.

"This week absolutely changed my life, more than I would have expected," said Chuasiriporn. "I guess everyone knows my face, which you know will be fun. I'm glad I had a chance to reach out to so many people. But I'm absolutely going back for my senior year. I've been looking forward to it my whole life."

Pub Date: 7/07/98

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