LSU sophomore golfer Ingrid Lindblad, playing on the host course of The Masters, finished in a six-way tie for third place Saturday in the final round of Augusta National Women’s Amateur.
Lindblad and Rose Zhang, the No. 1 ranked women’s amateur in the United States, entered the final round as co-leaders.
Both shot a final round 3-over 75 to finish at 2-over 218, a stroke behind Tsubasa Kajitani of Japan and Wake Forest golfer Emilia Migliaccio who finished at 1-over 217 to advance to a sudden death playoff. Kajitani won the tourney on the first playoff hole with a par on the 18th hole.
Lindblad birdied the 17th as she and playing partner Zhang went to the 18th needing birdies to join Kajitani and Migliaccio in the playoff.
Lindblad hit her second shot on the 18th to the right of the green, leaving her a tough chip shot for the birdie that she left high of the pin.
After Zhang missed her birdie putt and tapped in for a par, Lindblad rolled in a tough downhill putt for a par.
“I mean, it was tough out there,” Lindblad said after the round. “Even if you hit the green, it’s not a given two-putt. I’ve experienced that on the back nine today. And I mean, it’s tough out there and then you see the leaderboard and you’re like, oh, I’m only one back or I’m leading by one. So, it’s a lot of thoughts like outside the golf, the whole golf experience.”
Lindblad had tee troubles early on the first and third holes leading to bogeys but began to get her round going with great two putts from distance on both the fourth and fifth holes. The 2020 SEC Player of the Year had birdie putts on six, seven and nine with her putt on six rimming out and her putt on nine burning the left edge.
She finally was able to get a birdie to drop after a wonderful third-shot approach on the par 5 13th, hitting to five feet and making the birdie that put her at 1-over for the tournament at that point and with things happening elsewhere on the golf course, she was suddenly part of that six-way tie for the lead.
Unfortunately, a couple of bad breaks on the next three holes took Lindblad out of the lead when she took a five on the par-4 hole 14.
“I did not hit a good iron shot into that green,” she said. “I was long left and then I just told Thomas, my caddie, I was like, I don’t feel like this could end up close to the pin and it just kept rolling. I tried to hit a shot that landed on the fairway and then kind of slowed down a little bit but I didn’t hit it that good and just rolled out to about 40 feet. Left the par putt short and then made a 6-footer or something for bogey.”
On 15, the famed risk-reward par 5, Lindblad had 225 to the green and nailed her approach shot, setting up a long eagle putt. The attempt rolled out past the hole leading to a three-putt par.
“And then I went for the green on 15 and just got up there, hit a 5- wood in so I just thought why not go for it,” Lindblad recalled. “Then I three-putted that one because I didn’t think it would be that fast behind the hole. It just kept rolling and then I missed the birdie putt.”
On the par 3 16th, Lindblad’s tee shot flew the flag to the back part of the green where several players had struggled to two-putt from and her difficult left-to-right breaker again rolled out past the hole, leading to bogey.
Lindblad rallied on the 17th hole with two great shots that left her with an uphill putt which she buried in the hole for her second birdie of the round. Needing birdie on 18 to make the playoff her chip from off the green slid to the right and she settled for par.
Lindblad was the first LSU golfer to play in the event which was first played in 2019. Lindblad was invited to the 2020 event which was canceled because of the pandemic.
“It was awesome out there,” Lindblad said of the experience. “The course is amazing. We had a great time. I’m just happy to be here because I know not many people get to be here and the whole experience is awesome.”
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