India’s Aditi Ashok produced a sensational career-best nine-under 63 in the third and final round as she shot from the cutline to finish T-15 at the LPGA Drive On Championship.
Needing just 23 putts to go through the round, Aditi holed nine birdies and had no bogeys. There was a point, when most of the leaders had not even begun as Aditi rose up the leader board to as high as Tied-third, but finished T-15 as the others came into play.
After a T-13 in her previous start, Aditi is showing solid form and could well break through this season for her maiden title on the LPGA.
Ireland’s Leona Maguire (67) gave her mother a birthday present a day early by becoming the first woman golfer from her country to win on the LPGA Tour. Finishing in solo second was 11-time LPGA Tour winner Lexi Thompson.
Aditi, who shot 72-71 in the first two rounds, needed a birdie on her last hole of the second round, to make the cut. On the final day she was on fire.
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“I was putting really good,” Ashok told the LPGA.
“I made almost everything. Every chance I got, I made the putt, which was great. I wasn’t hitting it as good as I wanted to. I feel like I was not in control most of the time, so I was holing like 10-, 20-footers. Still, the putting worked, so it was a good day,” she added.
“I think I was kind of playing with a draw. Well, I was calling it a hook, but my dad was being nice. He was calling it a draw. I was turning the ball right-to-left a lot. After a couple holes I was just like, ‘I have to play with it today.’ I think it worked well.”
Maguire shot a final-round 67 to cruise into the winner’s circle. Her 198 ties her career-best 54-hole score, last recorded at the 2021 Pelican Women’s Championship.
Sarah Schmelzel made six birdies in her final seven holes to jump up into third at 14-under. Five players tied for fourth at 13-under, including Brittany Altomare.
Apart from Aditi, Xiyu Lin also shot a career-best 63 to finish T-45.