Sunday, September 13, 2009

NW Arkansas Championship Sunday: Enter the Shin

Ji-Yai Shin is known as the "Final Round Queen" in Korea for her Sunday heroics on the KLPGA. Well, she's doing what Moira Dunn couldn't and putting some pressure on the 2nd-round leaders of the NW Arkansas Championship. She's -6 through 16 today and -8 overall, tied for the lead with Song-Hee Kim, who shot a birdie-less 37 on the front. Let's see how low Shin--one of the little dragons inspired by Se Ri Pak's 1998 U.S. Women's Open win--can go!

[Update 1 (7:28 pm): Wow, Shin's 3rd birdie of the week on the par-5 18th hole was good enough to put her in a playoff with Sun Young Yoo (whose 3rd birdie of the week on the same hole offset her 3rd bogey of the week on the par-4 16th) and Angela Stanford (who eagled the 18th--following up on her eagle on the 2nd--to join them at -9). And Shin won it! Now to find out how. Taking the kids to the pool and catching up on yardwork really wore me out, so I took a break from following golf....]

[Update 2 (7:40 pm): Let me just say before I check things out that it's clear Shin had a lot of help this week. Jane Park was at -9 through 5 holes today after making birdies on 4 of them, but made 2 doubles and 5 bogeys the rest of the way. Song-Hee Kim made 17 pars and 1 bogey to finish at -8. Shi Hyun Ahn shot a bogey-free 66 to also finish at -8, but had 4 holes to make 1 birdie to catch Shin and couldn't do it. Na Yeon Choi was -7 with 13 holes left to play in the tournament, but could only manage 3 bogeys and 2 birdies the rest of the way. Hye Jung Choi reached -6 3 times before she ended up there with a walkoff birdie, but always fell back instead of moving forward. It just goes to show how hard it is to win on the LPGA and how much has to go right for it to happen.]

[Update 3 (7:49 pm): Great interviews with Shin and Stanford at LPGA.com, but what about Yoo?]

[Update 4 (7:55 pm): Ah, Hound Dog's back, and for a second, it almost feels like all is right with the world.]

[Update 5 (8:15 pm): But HD was on vacation this weekend and didn't follow the action live. The AP story was, as usual, sketchy, so I'm turning to the tournament blog from the official tournament site. Not much better. Urgh.]

[Update 6 (9/14/09, 11:01 pm): Ah, Jamie RS has more of a play-by-play--very nice color commentary mixed in there, as well!]

[Update 7 (11:15 pm): Wow, I thought Jamie had been joking about Golf Channel's coverage, but going by their highlights I can see he was totally dead-on, not just deadpan!]

[Update 8 (11:52 pm): I'll forgive Ryan Ballengee making like Golf Channel, but just this once. Of course the Angela Stanford story is great and I wouldn't have been sad to see her win. But how can you not root for someone who lost her mom at such a young age as Shin?]

4 comments:

tim said...

Quick comment from Ji-Yai's caddie Deane Herden via Skype "How good was that??!!"

The Constructivist said...

To me, that was an even more impressive win than in Singapore, where she turned it on in an amazing weekend. I don't know of anyone on the LPGA except her who can go from struggling to winning so quickly!

Jamie R. Saengsawang said...

It's funny Angela said in her interview (as she played with Jiyai on Friday) that she was hitting it well, she just lipped out everywhere.

I love the line "she'll put you to sleep," but she's real good.

I tried to recapture Sunday's best moments in my belated blog post.

The Constructivist said...

Just came across it--and linked to it. Fine job!