Malate Captures 19th NCGA Women’s Amateur Stroke by Four Over Zhang

Antonia Malate of Seaside is warming up for LPGA Tour Q-school this Fall.

The 22-year-old Malate, who played at San Jose State, captured the 19th Northern California Women’s Amateur Stroke Play Championship by four strokes over Cynthia Zhang of Milpitas at Poppy Hills Golf Course in Pebble Beach.

“It’s exciting to get a win,” said Malate, who grew up only a few miles from Poppy Hills and also won this tournament in 2018 when she sank a 12-foot birdie putt on the final hole of regulation.

“It’s great to get a win in my hometown. The first day, I just made all the putts and played steady. After that, I just continued to play steady and tried to focus on my own game.”

Malate, who won the 2022 Patriot All-America Women’s Invitational while playing for the Spartans, posted a score of 64-71-71—206, seven-under-par, while Zhang, who plays at Boston College, followed at 70-71-69—210 and defending champion Kaylyn Noh of Rocklin and Cal was third at 68-70-75—213.

The 64 Malate carded in the first round was two strokes shy of Lucy Li’s Poppy Hills women’s course record of 62, which was carded in the first round of the 2018 U.S. Junior Girls’ Championship.

Malate joined Lynn Cowan (2006 and 2007) as the only two-time winner of this event.

Darae Chung of New Zealand was fourth at 69-73-74—216, followed by Kylee Loewe of Scottsdale, Ariz., at 73-75-69—217, Madelyn Gamble of Pleasant Hill at 72-73-73—218, and Anika Varma of Roseville at 73-70-76—219.

Adora Liu of Newark shot 73-76-71—220 to tie for eighth with Kailin Fleiner of Sparks, Nev., who finished at 77-73-70—220, while Iliana Rubio of El Dorado Hills wound up at 74-72-75—221 to tie for 10th with Audrey Brust of Reno, Nev., who came in at 74-75-72—221.

Tina Barker of Fairfield claimed the NCGA Senior Women’s Amateur Stroke Play Championship by shooting 79-73-74—226, 13-over-par, followed by Karen Garcia of Cool at 77-79-72—228, and Cowan of Rocklin, who has won the Senior title a record four times, at 76-79-77—232.

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