KirkwoodGolf: In-Kyung Kim Picks Up Second Win of Season at Marathon Classic

Monday, July 24, 2017

In-Kyung Kim Picks Up Second Win of Season at Marathon Classic

In-Kyung Kim of South Korea holds the trophy after winning the Marathon Classic Presented By Owens Corning And O-I held at Highland Meadows Golf Club on July 23, 2017 in Sylvania, Ohio.

Photo Credit: Photo by Michael Cohen/Getty Images

From the LPGA Website

By:Adam Stanley

For the second time in 2017, In-Kyung Kim is a winner on the LPGA Tour.

Kim, who won the ShopRite LPGA Classic presented by ACER in June, came into this week’s Marathon Classic presented by Owens Corning and O-I having missed her last two cuts. But, as is the case with golf’s unpredictability, she fired an 8-under-par 63 (the best round of the day and tied for low round of the tournament) Sunday, and Kim put the finishing touches on a four-shot victory.

“I think today the pin positions were a little bit comfortable for me,” she said of the key to her sizzling finish. “I've been hitting little draws this week, and when the pin is tucked on the left side, I was having a hard time, but I think just knowing what I'm doing kind of helped me to plan out the round.”

Kim was bogey-free Sunday, and went out in 6-under-par 28. She said she was playing with a clear mind all day, which helped her stay focused, despite an hour-long rain delay.

“It's golf. I really didn't expect anything. Maybe I think that's why I played really well today,” said Kim “Really good names are on top of the leaderboard, and I just wanted to go out and make the most out of it, and today I was able to do that.”

It’s been a bit of an up-and-down season for Kim, as her two wins are only her second and third top-20 finish of 2017. However, she said Sunday she feels great about how her game feels heading into the final two majors.

“I'll be more confident going into that tournament. But at the same time, each tournament has a very unique style, and just getting used to the golf course and having the knowledge before a tournament starts (is important),” she said. “I think that's the key to play well. So I look forward to more opportunities.”

Lexi Thompson fired a 5-under-par 66 and finished runner-up. It was her fifth second-place finish in 2017 to along with her one win at the Kingsmill Championship presented by JTBC.

“I put up a good score. I had a little bit of a rough stretch there… but overall I'm very happy with the way I played,” said Thompson. “I was hitting a cut around the golf course, and that's usually not what I do. But I managed to put up some good scores, which I'm very happy about.”

Thompson shot a 5-under-par 66 Sunday but just couldn’t keep the pressure on Kim as she pulled away from the pack. She felt birdies were available today and she certainly took advantage of that (making seven total), but stumbled with a couple bogeys as well whereas Kim went bogey-free.

“Being only three back, I knew if I started off with some birdies and get it going, which I did, but you can't control other players,” said Thompson. “You just have to focus on doing your best and controlling your attitude and your game.”

36-hole leader Gerina Piller finished tied for third along with Peiyun Chien at 15-under. They both notched their best finishes of the year this week in Ohio.

“I feel like my game, I played really well. To start off 8-under, that's huge. But I didn't come away with the win, but it doesn't mean I didn't have a winning performance,” said Piller.

Chien, meanwhile, said she was ‘very proud’ of her week.

“Very proud because a lot of Taiwanese… a lot of Taiwan fans really care about this tournament, and I played well,” she stated.

Sandra Changkija finished a shot further back at 14-under par and finished alone in fifth (also her best finish of the year), while Kim Kaufman and last week’s U.S. Women’s Open winner Sung Hyung Park finished at 13-under and tied for sixth.

Five golfers finished at 12-under and rounded out the top 10 including Angela Stanford, Angel Yin, Brittany Lincicome, Aditi Ashok, and 54-hole leader Nelly Korda, who shot 3-over-par 74 Sunday to drop out of contention.

The LPGA Tour heads to Europe next week for a two-week stretch including the Aberdeen Asset Management Ladies Scottish Open and the fourth major of the year, the RICOH Women’s British Open.