S Korean teen wins Futures Tour event


RICHMOND, Va. -- South Korean teenager Haeji Kang won the Greater Richmond Duramed Futures Classic on Sunday for her first pro title, beating Mexicos Sophia Sheridan on the first hole of a playoff.
Kang, the youngest professional member of the Duramed Futures Tour, closed with a 4-under 68 to match Sheridan (66) at 11-under 205 on the Richmond Country Club course.
I cant describe how happy I am right now, said Kang, who will turn 18 in November. I almost cried on the 18th hole.
After Kang bogeyed the 18th in regulation to set up the playoff, Sheridan ran into trouble on the playoff hole'the 18th'and ended up conceding.
After both players drove into the middle of the fairway, Sheridans second shot with a hybrid crashed into the trees and bounced back into the rough. She punched out and her ball skidded across the cart path out of bounds.
Sheridan dropped her ball, advancing 20 yards on the following shot, before punching her sixth shot over the cart path again to take another two-stroke penalty. Standing over her eighth stroke, Sheridan asked head rules official Kelly Wergin if she could pick her up ball and concede the hole to Kang.
I wasnt nervous and I hit a pretty good 5-wood, Sheridan said. The hole was wide open, but there were rocks everywhere and I was just trying to give myself a par chance. Unfortunately, it just didnt work out.
Kang, who shot a course-record 65 on Friday and added a 72 on Saturday, earned $14,000 to jump from 22nd to 10th on the money list with $28,495. The top five at the end of the season will earn 2009 LPGA Tour cards.
Today was so good, Kang said. I left a few shots out there, but I had a very good day with the putter. Even if I would have come in second, I would have been really happy. My goal coming into this tournament was to try and make the top 15.
Vicky Hurst, the money leader at $78,472, shot a 72 to tie for third with Sara Brown (68), Stacy Lewis (70) and Nicole Hage (71) at 7 under.