American teenager Yealimi Noh will get another chance to build on her promising LPGA debut as a professional.
With Noh, 17, making a stirring run into contention at the Thornberry Classic last week, the Marathon Classic announced Saturday that she had accepted a sponsor’s exemption to play in its event this week. Noh ended up tying for sixth on Sunday.
“I'm just overall really happy with how I played and how I finished, too,” No said. “It was my goal to be inside the top 10.”
Noh made it into the Thornberry Creek field as a Monday qualifier. As an LPGA non-member, she wasn’t eligible for the top-10 berth into the Marathon Classic that was available to members not already in the Marathon field. The sponsor’s exemption spared Noh having to go through yet another Monday qualifier.
“I missed like five in a row [before making it into Thornberry Creek], even when there weren’t that many people,” Noh said. “So, I was really disappointed, but I knew my game could do better.”
Noh made a bogey at the last Sunday that cost her about $10,000, but she still took home $63,170 in earnings, which would rank her 104th on the LPGA money list, if she were a member. It’s important because she can earn LPGA status if she finishes the year with tour earnings that are equal or greater to the player who finishes the year 40th in money winnings.
Last year, Chella Choi finished 40th in money winnings with $253,217 in earnings.
Noh, from Concord, Calif., won the U.S. Girls’ Junior, the Junior PGA Championship and Canadian Women’s Amateur in consecutive weeks last year. She turned pro back in January and had been playing mostly mini-tour events while trying to Monday qualify for LPGA and Symetra Tour events.