West Australian Hannah Green shot a flawless final round 64 to overcome a seven shot deficit and claim her second victory in 2017 on the Symetra Tour overnight.
The win at The Murphy USA El Dorado Shootout, and the US$15,000 payday moves Green up from 6th to 4th place in the Volvik Race for the card, and means that with just three events left on the Symetra Tour the 20-year-old is virtually guaranteed a place on the LPGA Tour in 2018.
Two weeks ago, having returned to the US after a break at home in Perth, Green wrote the letters “LPGA” with a smiley face on her golf glove as a constant reminder of the ultimate goal. The dream became a reality on Sunday when Green edged out Frenchwomen Celine Boutier by one shot to secure that coveted spot on the LPGA Tour for the 2018 season.
The twenty-year-old could not contain her delight at achieving her childhood dream.
“I didn’t really know what to expect in the last six weeks (now three weeks left), I wanted to make sure I was staying on top of my game and didn’t get knocked out of the top 10,” explained Green, who picked up her ninth top 10 finish of the year. “To win this week is really great and it sets me up for next year.”
Green started the day tied for fourth place and was off to a great start making made birdies at the 1st, 4th, 5th and 7th on the opening nine to move into contention at 7-under par.
Still three shots off the pace, Green made further birdies on 11 and 12 to move into a four-way share of the lead with Boutier, overnight leader Dottie Ardina and fellow ALPG member Charlotte Thomas.
Green, who had shown her potential back in 2015 at the ISPS Handa New Zealand Women’s Open by finishing second to Lydia Ko as an amateur, made crucial birdies at 15 and 17 to take control of the tournament and closed out with a solid par on the 18th to finish at 11 under par. Boutier would go on to make a birdie of her own on 18 to finish at 10-under but the bird had flown and Green was the champion.
“Obviously I’m really happy and excited, but it doesn’t feel real quite yet,” said Green, who also won the Sara Bay Classic on the Symetra Tour in April “I’m really pleased with how today turned out and I’m glad I shot a really good score to get the win.”
The 64 ties her personal best score, which she also shot in the final-round of the Danielle Downey Credit Union Classic in Rochester earlier this year
As is the norm for the talented West Australian, Green's statistics were outstanding, hitting 17-of-18 greens and 12-of-14 fairways in regulation and requiring just 28 putts.
“My ball striking was definitely there today, going bogey-free on this course means everything tied together today, which was great.”
Four years ago when Green graduated from high school in Perth, she devised a plan to reach the LPGA.
“I set a plan and I wasn’t going to college in the U.S. or studying in Australia, I just said that I was turning professional and I wanted to be on the LPGA,” said Green. I’ve been dreaming about this for at least four years so to have it come true is awesome.”
Green is a two-time recipient of the Karrie Webb Scholarship and has had the chance to develop a friendship with the Aussie legend. Webb was one of the first people to congratulate Green on twitter after the win.
“She has been such a big supporter, not only to my golf, but a lot of female golfers in Australia,” said Green. “I got to go to the U.S. Open with her and those are amazing experiences. I would have never been able to go to a major unless I was playing. She is just awesome and to have her as a close friend is really cool.”
Green’s father, Tau, was on her bag this week.
“It was great to have a win with him on the bag,” said Green, who called her mom before the trophy ceremony and talked to her at 3:30 a.m. Australia time. “I’m sure it’s a moment he won’t ever stop telling his friends about.”
In addition to the US$15,000 first place check, Green was also presented with a diamond bracelet valued at US$10,000 courtesy of Murphy-Pritard Jewelers.
Of the other ALPG members in the field this week Charlotte Thomas finished in a tie for 5th place, Rebecca Artis finished 30th while Liv Cheng finished 35th.
For final results and prizemoney go to symetrascoring.com
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