Langley's Sue Kim Wins On LPGA's Symetra Tour
LAKE WALES, Florida — Sue Kim of Langley, B.C., made a 25-foot birdie putt on the ninth hole to seize the lead and never looked back as she carded a 2-under 70 on Sunday to win the Florida’s Natural Charity Classic at 5-under 211.
Kim earned her second career Symetra Tour victory and moved to the top spot on the Volvik Race for the Card money list.
With the $18,750 first place check, Kim has now accumulated $20,201 through three events.
“It feels great,” said Kim. “I’ve had some great finishes at the Florida’s Natural Charity Classic and it feels great to finally win it.”
Kim, who came into the final round three shots off the lead, made bogey on the third hole to fall back to 2-under. She carded four birdies over her next six holes to make the turn at 5-under, one shot up on fellow Canadian Brittany Henderson.
Sisters Brooke and Brittany Henderson tied for second, three strokes back. The 17-year-old Brooke Henderson finished with a 70, and Brittany shot a 74.
“It’s a really good feeling,” Brooke Henderson said. “It would’ve been better to be one and two, but Sue had a great week and I’m happy for her.”
“It was a great tournament for me from the first day forward,” said Kim, who was the only player in the field under par all three days (70-71-70). “I had the right people around me this week to get me in position to win. It was a great patient tournament for me to grab the W.”
On the back nine, Kim birdied hole 13 to gain some breathing room and cruised to the finish. She made par on the final four holes.
“My iron play was really good the last three days, I didn’t have many misses,” said Kim, who moved from Korea to Canada when she was 10-years-old. “The course was playing short and firm so I had some shorter irons in and that gave me more birdie opportunities.”
The 24-year-old, who hit 40 of 54 greens in regulation for the week, finished sixth on the Volvik Race for the Card money list in 2013 to earn LPGA Tour membership in 2014. She struggled on the LPGA Tour last year, missing the cut in 11 of 19 events.
“Words can’t describe how important a win is out here,” said Kim. “This is definitely a confidence booster and let’s me know that I can go back out on the LPGA and compete. This win definitely gives me a good mindset to go back out there.”
Kim last won on the Symetra Tour in 2013 at the Decatur-Forsyth Classic. The win was especially meaningful for Kim because it came on father’s day. Kim lost her dad, Jong, three years prior in a fatal car accident.
Kim, who now resides in ChampionsGate near Orlando, had a great support system around her all week including her mom.
“I think this win was meant to be this week because of my support group,” explained Kim. “I felt really comfortable commuting back-and-forth from home. Having a friend come caddie and my mom there and playing with a fellow Canadian made it feel like a casual round of golf.”
Samantha Richdale (72) of Kelowna, B.C. and Maude Aimee-Leblanc (75) of Sherbrooke, Que., both finished tied for 23rd. Augusta James (71) of Bath, Ont., Jessica Wallace (71) of Langley, B.C. and Sara-Maude Juneau (73) of Fossambault, Que. all finished in a tie for 30th. Jennifer Kirby (77) of Paris, Ont and Nicole Zhang (78) of Calgary were tied for 47th.
CLICK HERE To See A Video Interview With Sue Kim Following Her Victory