Canada’s Monet Chun, Japan’s Saki Baba advance to title match of U.S. Women’s Amateur

UNIVERSITY PLACE — It will probably be an all worldwide 36-hole title match Sunday within the U.S. Women’s Amateur at Chambers Bay.

That’s as a result of Japan’s Saki Baba defeated Bailey Shoemaker from Florida 7 and 6 in a single semifinal Saturday and Canada’s Monet Chun defeated Annabel Wilson from the Republic of Ireland 2 and 1 within the different.

Wilson, who had not trailed at any time in her first 4 match-play rounds, fell behind after one gap Saturday.

Chun, who gained the Canadian Women’s Amateur three weeks in the past, led a lot of the match — however by no means by greater than 2-up — and gained on the par-3 seventeenth gap when Wilson missed a couple of 5-foot birdie putt.

“The whole round was quite tough,” stated Chun, a junior on the University of Michigan who gained the Big Ten title this previous spring. “(Wilson) is definitely a good player, so I don’t think there was a turning point for me.”

Chun seemed like she would take a 2-up lead on the sixth gap, however missed a 3-foot par putt.

But the seemingly unflappable Chun didn’t let that trouble her. She obtained up and down from about 100 yards on the robust par-4 seventh, making a couple of 7-foot downhill putt to retain her 1-up lead.

“I am pretty stable emotionally through the course,” stated Chun, who pushed her personal bag the primary three days earlier than letting her mother, Elena, take over. “There are some up-and-downs in my head, but I’m definitely on the calmer side.”

Chun hit her tee shot on the par-3 ninth gap to about 2 toes and made the quick putt to take a 2-up lead. Wilson, who will probably be a UCLA senior, gained the subsequent gap, however may by no means catch up.

Shoemaker and Baba, each 17 and on the point of begin their senior yr in highschool, additionally had one thing else in frequent: They each made the lower on the U.S. Women’s Open in June and each have been a part of a bunch of gamers who completed tied for forty ninth.

But Baba set herself aside early Saturday. She birdied the par-5 first gap to take the early lead, took a 2-up lead when Shoemaker missed a brief par putt on the third gap and went 3-up when Shoemaker bogeyed the par-5 fourth.

It obtained principally higher from there for Baba. Shoemaker gained her first gap of the spherical on eighth, reducing Baba’s result in 4-up. But Baba made birdies on the ninth and tenth holes, profitable each, to take a 6-up lead and finish any actual suspense.

“Not really,” Baba stated by means of an interpreter when requested if her win was as simple because it seemed. “I was just thinking, ‘I want to win, I want to win.’ ”

Baba stated her technique after shedding the eighth gap was to only hit it on the pin. It labored.

Baba hit her tee shot on the inexperienced on the quick par-4 twelfth, making a birdie to finish the match. On Friday, she holed out from 119 yards for an eagle on the twelfth, and stated it’s now her favourite gap.

Baba and Chun earned berths into subsequent yr’s U.S. Women’s Open by advancing to the finals. On Sunday, every has an opportunity to be the second winner of this occasion from their nation.

Chun will attempt to accomplish the identical feat Cathy Sherk did in 1978 by profitable each the Canadian Women’s Amateur and the U.S. Women’s Amateur in the identical yr.

“The Canadian Amateur was definitely really, really important to me being a Canadian, but this one would be pretty special as well,” she stated.

Baba will attempt to be a part of Michiko Hatton, who gained in 1985, as winners of this occasion from Japan.

“Being in America and in the States, I am very happy about,” Baba stated. “Being in the finals is what’s really good.”

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