Austin Ernst became a first time LPGA Tour winner at the Portland Classic in Oregon.
Shooting a final round -5 under par 67 Austin Ernst posted her first ever LPGA Tour win at the Portland Classic on the Columbia Edgewater Country Club course.
She was tied at the top of the leaderboard with I.K. Kim, both on -14 under par for the tournament, but then won with a par on the first play-off hole, the par four 18th. Actually she was two shots in the lead going into the final two holes, but the nerves got her;
“I did a really good job of just slowing myself down, but yeah, just preparing for the playoff I knew I kind of pulled two drives left, and then I actually talked to my dad on the phone, and he said it kind of looked like I had it angled a bit that way.
“So just went out, had my brother check my alignment, and then hit a few good ones and then just rolled a bunch of putts trying to get you know, I had to feel the speed, just kind of trying to stay loose. And just went out there and tried to do the same things I was doing today.”
“I actually saw the leaderboard on six green. I think I saw I had like a two-shot lead, but you can make a lot of birdies out here, so I really didn’t try to pay attention to it very much. I kind of had, I was actually trying to get to 18-under today starting the day. But I just kept trying to make birdies.”
I.K. had hit her drive on the play-off hole too well, which left her between clubs. She has an unenviable record in play-offs, played in five, won none;
“I’m happy, but I played a lot of playoffs and haven’t won one yet. So just kind of, it was in the back of my mind. But she deserves it.”
Tied in third place were Chella Choi and So Yeon Ryu, both ladies finishing the tournament at -12 under par. So Yeon blames poor fairway bunker shots for her disappointing day;
“My shots feel great, my putting feels great. Maybe only thing is maybe fairway bunker shots are not that great.
“Next week I’m going to charge up and be more focused, and I’m pretty sure I can get a good result at Evian.”