Georgia Hall won the Cambia Portland Classic on Sunday for her first LPGA Tour victory in the United States, beating Ashleigh Buhai with a par on the second hole of a playoff. She captured victory with a par on the second playoff hole, taking the win over South African Ashleigh Buhai.
Hall held the lead at -13 stepping to
the final hole, with Buhai in the clubhouse at -12 after a blazing final-round
65. With no leaderboards on the course and not opting to check her scores on
her phone as currently permitted by the LPGA Tour, she did not know where she
stood in relation to the field. After sending her approach to No. 18 in the
back bunker, Hall two-putted for bogey to drop to -12 and into a playoff.
“I was pretty nervous the last nine
holes and I never looked at the leaderboard once, so I had no idea where I was.
I didn’t know I was leading. Must have been leading for that four or five
holes,” said Hall. “To bogey, the last I was quite upset about that. I had to
refigure myself and get back to try and win that playoff.”
Hall stuck her approach to 6 feet on
the first playoff hole (No. 18), but her birdie attempt pulled to the right.
The second playoff hole, No. 1, saw both players roll over the green and chip
on to within 6 feet for par. Hall knocked in her par attempt and when Buhai
sent her par putt past the hole, Hall earned her second LPGA Tour victory. It
was especially sweet to earn that win at Columbia Edgewater Country Club, after
Hall entered the final round here in 2018 with a two-stroke lead but failed to
take home the win.
“That did enter my mind. I didn’t want
to come second again,” said Hall. “This course suits me. I love the condition
of it. I was just really pushing to win in the playoff, so I’m really happy and
just really excited to win.”
For Buhai, missing her first victory
since joining the LPGA Tour in 2008 was certainly a heart-breaking miss. But
while the 31-year-old did not hoist the trophy, she did receive a great
consolation prize – a berth in December’s U.S. Women’s Open.
“The fact that I shot 7-under today
and got myself in contention, my goal going into today was to get into double
digits and ultimately finish top 10 because I’m not in the U.S. Open yet,” said
Buhai. “There are two spots, so I accomplished that goal; to get into a playoff
was a bonus. Hit good shots coming down the stretch. You know, adrenaline. It’s
difficult to really calculate. Not much you can do, and just a misread putt.
Just misread it a little bit.”
Moriya Jutanugarn and Yealimi Noh tied for third at -11, with Noh receiving the second qualifying spot into the U.S. Women’s Open. Mel Reid, who started the day with a two-stroke lead, shot a final-round 2-over 74 to fall into a tie for fifth at -10, while defending Cambia Portland Classic champion Hannah Green bogeyed the final hole to drop into a tie for 12th at -9.