Defending Champion Talley Eliminated at U.S. Women’s Amateur

words: USGA

Su-Hyun Oh dominated defending champion Emma Talley in Thursday afternoon’s round-of-16 match, notching a 9-and-8 win at the 2014 U.S. Women’s Amateur Championship, being conducted at the 6,297-yard, par-70 Nassau Country Club.

Oh, 18, of Australia, and Talley, 20, of Princeton, Ky., halved the first hole. But from that point forward, the match belonged solely to Oh. Her conceded birdie from 2 feet at the par-3 second set the tone for the match.

“When I hit it close, it was a good start,” said Oh, the runner-up at last week’s Canadian Women’s Amateur Championship. “It always helps when you go on a good start in match play.”

That good start kept rolling, with Oh winning the next eight holes for the runaway victory. She played to the equivalent of 4 under par, with the usual match-play concessions, while Talley, who clinched the winning point for the USA at the Curtis Cup Match in June, struggled to 8 over.

“Sometimes you run into someone that’s playing really well,” said Talley. “We started out basically the same. She just made her putts and I didn’t.”

“Emma didn’t play her best, but she also had some really bad breaks in the middle,” said Oh, who reached the round of 16 with a 4-and-3 win over Liz Breed in the morning’s round of 32. “In the end, it all just went my way.”

Oh’s margin of victory was the championship’s largest since 2005, and is the second-largest victory in championship history. Angela Park eliminated Jennifer Ackerson by the same 9-and-8 margin in the third round at Ansley Golf Club in Roswell, Ga. Only four players have completed the 10-and-8 victory sweep, and none since Mary Lena Faulk in 1954.

Oh will next meet Kristen Gillman, 16, of Austin, Texas, in Friday’s quarterfinals. Gillman, who won last week’s Junior PGA Championship by 11 strokes, advanced with a 5-and-3 victory over Stanford University sophomore Casey Danielson, 19, of Osceola, Wis.

Alison Lee, 19, of Valencia, Calif., survived a scare from 18-year-old Eimi Koga, of Honolulu. Lee, who fell to Talley in the 2013 Women’s Amateur semifinals, never trailed against Koga, but needed 19 holes to seal the victory.

Lee, No. 3 in the World Amateur Golf Ranking™, built a 3-up lead through seven holes, but bogeys at holes 8, 10 and 12 squared the match. She had a prime opportunity to regain the lead at the par-3 16th, but her birdie putt did a 360-degree spin around the hole and lipped out.

“I thought that would have been a good chance coming down the stretch,” said Lee. Saying she “brushed that off,” Lee again needed to brace herself when faced with a 10-foot birdie putt at the 18th to send the match to extra holes.

“On the last hole, when she made her [birdie] putt, I had a few negative thoughts going through my head,” said Lee. “I fed myself positive thoughts and thankfully it went in.”

Lee ultimately won on the first green, when Koga failed to get up and down for par and Lee converted her two-putt par. The relief was evident on the face of the UCLA sophomore, who is the only member of the victorious 2014 USA Curtis Cup Team still competing in the championship.

“I feel like I could have done a lot better,” said Lee, who eliminated Jennifer Coleman, 2 and 1, in the round of 32. “I made a lot of mistakes here and there. But I want to learn from what I did today and be happy that I won.”

Next up for Lee will be world No. 2 Brooke Mackenzie Henderson. The 16-year-old from Canada, who earned low-amateur honors at the 2014 U.S. Women’s Open, advanced with a 3-and-2 win over Dylan Kim, 17, of Plano, Texas.

“It was a little up and down,” said Henderson, a 4-and-3 winner over Ember Schuldt in the round of 32. “We both weren’t playing great, but we sort of fought it out until the end.”

Eunjeong Seong, 14, of the Republic of Korea, advanced with a 19-hole victory over Liv Cheng, 21, of New Zealand. Seong, the 2014 U.S. Women’s Amateur Public Links runner-up, will next face Andrea Lee, 15, of Hermosa Beach, Calif. She notched a 4-and-2 win over Jessica Porvasnik, 19, of Hinckley, Ohio.

Hannah O’Sullivan and Grace Na round out the Women’s Amateur quarterfinalists. O’Sullivan, 16, of Paradise Valley, Ariz., needed 20 holes to advance over 2014 Canadian Women’s Amateur champion Augusta James, 21, of Canada. Na, 21, of Alameda, Calif., earned a 2-up win over Lauren Kim, 19, of Los Altos, Calif. Na, who recently exhausted her eligibility at Pepperdine University, is the oldest player remaining in the championship.

The 2014 U.S. Women’s Amateur Championship consists of 36 holes of stroke play followed by six rounds of match play. The championship is scheduled to conclude with a 36-hole final at 8:30 a.m. EDT on Sunday.

The U.S. Women’s Amateur is one of 13 national championships conducted annually by the United States Golf Association, 10 of which are strictly for amateurs.

Results

Results from the second round of match play at the 2014 U.S. Women’s Amateur Championship, being conducted at the 6,297-yard, par-70 Nassau Country Club:

Upper Bracket
Hannah O’Sullivan, Paradise Valley, Ariz. (145) def. Lakareber Abe, Angleton, Texas (148), 2 and 1
Augusta James, Canada (146) def. Elizabeth Tong, Canada (146), 2 up
Grace Na, Alameda, Calif. (141) def. Simin Feng, People’s Republic of China (145), 2 and 1
Lauren Kim, Los Altos, Calif. (144) def. Mariah Stackhouse, Riverdale, Ga. (141), 4 and 3
Dylan Kim, Plano, Texas (140) def. Brittany Marchand, Canada (144), 2 and 1
Brooke Mackenzie Henderson, Canada (142) def. Ember Schuldt, Sterling, Ill. (143), 4 and 3
Alison Lee, Valencia, Calif. (140) def. Jennifer Coleman, Rolling Hills Estates, Calif. (145), 2 and 1
Eimi Koga, Honolulu, Hawaii (145) def. Jing Yan, People’s Republic of China (146), 2 and 1

Lower Bracket
Su-Hyun Oh, Australia (138) def. Liz Breed, Waynesboro, Pa. (145), 4 and 3
Emma Talley, Princeton, Ky. (146) def. Princess Mary Superal, Philippines (143), 3 and 1
Kristen Gillman, Austin, Texas (145) def. Celine Boutier, France (140), 20 holes
Casey Danielson, Osceola, Wis. (141) def. Angel Yin, Arcadia, Calif. (144), 4 and 3
Andrea Lee, Hermosa Beach, Calif. (138) def. Lauren Stephenson, Lexington, S.C. (145), 4 and 3
Jessica Porvasnik, Hinckley, Ohio (142) def. Portland Rosen, Sugar Land, Texas (143), 2 and 1
Liv Cheng, New Zealand (147) def. Amy Lee, Brea, Calif. (144), 2 and 1
Eunjeong Seong, Republic of Korea (141) def. Ally McDonald, Fulton, Miss. (145), 8 and 7

Results from the third round of match play at the 2014 U.S. Women’s Amateur Championship, being conducted at the 6,297-yard, par-70 Nassau Country Club:

Upper Bracket
Hannah O’Sullivan, Paradise Valley, Ariz. (145) def. Augusta James, Canada (146), 20 holes
Grace Na, Alameda, Calif. (141) def. Lauren Kim, Los Altos, Calif. (144), 2 up
Brooke Mackenzie Henderson, Canada (142) def. Dylan Kim, Plano, Texas (140), 3 and 2
Alison Lee, Valencia, Calif. (140) def. Eimi Koga, Honolulu, Hawaii (145), 19 holes

Lower Bracket
Su-Hyun Oh, Australia (138) def. Emma Talley, Princeton, Ky. (146), 9 and 8
Kristen Gillman, Austin, Texas (145) def. Casey Danielson, Osceola, Wis. (141), 5 and 3
Andrea Lee, Hermosa Beach, Calif. (138) def. Jessica Porvasnik, Hinckley, Ohio (142), 4 and 2
Eunjeong Seong, Republic of Korea (141) def. Liv Cheng, New Zealand (147), 19 holes

Pairings

Pairings for the quarterfinal round of match play at the 2014 U.S. Women’s Amateur Championship, being conducted at the 6,297-yard, par-70 Nassau Country Club (all times EDT):

Upper Bracket
12:45 p.m. – Hannah O’Sullivan, Paradise Valley, Ariz. (145) vs. Grace Na, Alameda, Calif. (141)
12:55 p.m. – Brooke Mackenzie Henderson, Canada (142) vs. Alison Lee, Valencia, Calif. (140)

Lower Bracket
1:05 p.m. – Su-Hyun Oh, Australia (138) vs. Kristen Gillman, Austin, Texas (145)
1:15 p.m. – Andrea Lee, Hermosa Beach, Calif. (138) vs. Eunjeong Seong, Republic of Korea (141)