BEDMINSTER, N.J. – Hye-Jin Choi is looking to make history Sunday in a bid to become just the second amateur to win the U.S. Women’s Open since the championship began in 1946.
The 17-year-old from Osan, South Korea, shot a 2-under-par 70 at Trump National on Saturday to move into a tie for second, two shots behind Shanshan Feng.
Catherine Lacoste of France won the U.S. Women’s Open as an amateur in 1967.
Choi is a member of the Korean national team and is No. 2 in the World Amateur Golf Ranking. She tied for seventh at the LPGA’s ISPS Handa Women’s Australian Open earlier this year.
“I didn't have the greatest start, but I think if I just stay focused and play, not necessarily play safe, but maybe more aggressively, I think I'm going to be OK tomorrow,” Choi said through a translator.
Choi is showing off some impressive all-around skills. She is 13th in driving distance in the field (243 yards per drive), 16th in driving accuracy (34/42 fairways hit), fifth in greens in regulation (40/54) and fifth in putting.
Fellow South Korean Amy Yang played alongside Choi.
“She was very mature out there,” Yang said. “She hits it very accurate and long. And her putter was really good. I think she would be a great player, like in the future.”