No. 1 Zhang, Stanford Sweep Titles Again

Freshman Rose Zhang won her second straight start and led the Cardinal to victory again.

The 18-year-old Zhang (pictured center), the No. 1-ranked women’s amateur in the world from Irvine, got off to a shaky start in the final round before rallying to beat Jackie Lucena of Florida by one stroke as Stanford claimed an eight-stroke triumph over Virginia in the Windy City Collegiate at Westmoreland Country Club in Wilmette, Ill., outside Chicago.

“You’re going to have bogeys and you’re going to not have the best holes, but it’s good to have the mindset that you can keep coming back and one less stroke means one less stroke for your team,” said Zhang, who also won her first college start recently and led the Cardinal to victory in the Molly Intercollegiate at Bayonet Golf Course in Seaside.

“It’s very different because you’re not playing for yourself only, you’re playing for your team, and I love the team environment. Every single event, we talk about never giving up for your teammates. Being able to be a part of something bigger than yourself definitely makes a difference, and I’ve been loving it so far.”

Zhang, the 2021 U.S. Girls champion and the 2020 U.S. Women’s Amateur winner, made a bogey on the second hole and a double bogey on the third, but then was flawless the rest of the way, carding three birdies in four holes through No. 9 and making a birdie on the 16th hole that proved to be the difference. She finished with a score of 72-70-70—212, 4-under-par.

Lucena was second at 69-73-71—213, followed by Bohyun Park of Texas at 68-74-73—215, and Taglao Jeeravivitaporn of Iowa State at 74-69-75—218.

Cindy Kou of USC shot 72-79-68—219 to tie for fifth with Riley Smyth of Virginia, who finished at 72-78-69—219, while Aline Krauter of Stanford totaled 74-72-74—220 to tie for seventh with Hannah Darling of South Carolina, who wound up at 76-74-70—220, and Virginia Bossi of Virginia, who came in at 75-72-73—220, and Celeste Valhino of Virginia was 10th at 73-77-71—221.

Rounding out the scoring for team champion Stanford, which has won four straight stroke-play events dating to last season, were Angelina Ye in a tie for 22nd at 73-78-75—226, Rachel Heck in a tie for 38th at 72-81-76—229, Carolina Sturdza in a tie for 42nd at 81-72-77—230.

Stanford claimed its seventh stroke play victory in the 2021 calendar year with a score of 291-292-295—878, 14-over, while Virginia was second at 302-293-291—886, followed by Florida at 297-297-296—890, Texas at 296-296-300—892 and Oregon at 306-298-295—899.

South Carolina was sixth at 307-308-292—907, while Michigan totaled 304-305-300—909 to tie for seventh with Northwestern, which finished at 309-300-300—909. Duke was ninth at 303-306-303—912, followed by Iowa State at 311-295-309—915.

USC finished 14th at 300-315-315—930.

For complete results, visit http://results.golfstat.com/public/leaderboards/gsnav.cfm?pg=team&tid=23263

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