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Ryu clinches LPGA Rookie of the Year award

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So Yeon Ryu clinched the Louise Suggs Rolex Rookie of the Year award with her fifth-place finish Sunday at the Sunrise LPGA Taiwan Championship.

Ryu, 22, wrapped up the award with three events remaining this season.

With 1,306 points, Ryu can’t mathematically be caught. Lexi Thompson is second with 779 points, Lizette Salas third with 333 and Sydnee Michaels fourth with 297.

Ryu is the fifth Asian player in the last seven years to win the honor. She’s the eighth South Korean to win since 1998, the year Se Ri Pak won the honor and inspired that nation’s run in women’s golf.

Ryu won the Jamie Farr Toledo Classic in August, one of her 14 top-10 finishes this year. She won the U.S. Women’s Open last year as a non-member of the LPGA.

“Winning the U.S. Women’s Open as a non-member was a really huge thing for me, but I really worried that some people might think it was just one lucky win,” she said. “That was a huge pressure on me, so I set a goal to win this award and add another trophy. I’m so proud of myself to be the eighth Korean to win the Rookie of the Year.”