Challenged but undaunted, So Yeon Ryu won the Canadian Pacific Women’s Open Sunday in record-breaking fashion.
After watching Na Yeon Choi whittle her lead from five shots to one on the back nine, Ryu steadied herself coming home to claim her third LPGA title, her first in two years.
With a 3-under-par 69 at London Hunt and Country Club, Ryu finished at 23-under overall, breaking the Canadian Women’s Open 72-hole record for scoring in relation to par by five shots. Ryu finished two shots ahead of Choi (67) and five ahead of Inbee Park (68) for a 1-2-3 finish for the surging South Koreans.
“I smell like champagne right now, but I’m still so happy,” Ryu, 24, said in her post-tournament news conference.
When Choi birdied the 15th and Ryu bogeyed, Ryu’s lead was down to one. Ryu didn’t waver the rest of the way.
“Na Yeon almost chased me down, so I was pretty nervous at that moment," said Ryu, who won the 2011 U.S. Women's Open. "The really good thing is I did trust myself. I was focused on my game.”
After a sluggish start this year, the South Koreans have rallied to win the last three LPGA events. Coming into August, Park had the South Koreans’ lone LPGA title of 2014. After Mirim Lee won two weeks ago, Park followed last week, winning the Wegmans LPGA Championship.
Ryu’s teammates on the South Korean International Crown team were all there together Sunday in the end. Choi, Park and I.K. Kim congratulated Ryu.
“We’re getting close to each other,” Choi said. “We're knowing each other a little bit more, actually, more true knowing each other.”