Wie Ousted at Womens Amateur


USGAGLADWYNE, Pa. (AP) -- Teen sensation Michelle Wie was beaten 1-up by Maru Martinez on Thursday in the first round of the U.S. Women's Amateur.
The 13-year-old from Honolulu won the U.S. Women's Public Links in June. Two weeks ago, she was eliminated in the third round of the U.S. Girls' Junior.
She started well this week, finishing second by a stroke to medalist Aree Song. But the player known for 300-yard drives and big galleries couldn't get past Martinez. The sophomore at Auburn was a semifinalist in this event last year and survived a playoff Wednesday just to reach the match-play field of 64.
Martinez won despite being penalized a hole for accepting a ride in a golf cart.
'That's experience,' said Wie's golf coach, Gary Gilchrist. 'A lot of these girls have played in these events before. She hasn't. She lost. She has to learn from it.'
Martinez held a two-hole lead after the front nine, but was penalized a hole for accepting a ride in an electric cart from the clubhouse to the 10th tee.
Martinez, unnerved after learning of the penalty, bogeyed the 10th hole to fall into a tie, but then regrouped and made a 12-footer on 13 to save par and take a one-hole lead.
'She didn't take advantage,' Gilchrist said of Wie. 'She let the other girl believe she could win.'
Wie evened the match with a birdie on the par-4 16th, but Martinez came right back to take the lead on 17. She blasted out of a sand trap to four feet and made the par putt -- after Wie had missed a short par putt -- to reclaim a one-hole lead.
Wie saved par by knocking in a five-footer on 18. But Martinez claimed the victory -- and shocked the large gallery that followed the pair around all day -- by making a three-foot par. Martinez hugged her father and caddie, Julio, after she made the putt.
Wie was left to sign a few autographs and face the media.
'Everything just didn't work,' she said.
Especially Wie's putting. While Martinez made long putts to stay in the match, Wie three-putted for a bogey on 7, took three putts to get down from the fringe on the par-5 8th and three-putted for a bogey on 9.
'I felt as if I hit it perfectly and read it perfectly, but it just didn't go in,' Wie said.
Wie had a 2-under 140 in the 36-hole medal play, 13 strokes better than Martinez.
'If she plays that way in stroke play, she really would be good,' Wie said. 'Some players are better in match play.'

Copyright 2003 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.