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Song Medals at LPGA Q School
Aree Song managed to successfully combat windy, chilly conditions in Dayton Beach, Fla., to shoot the low combined score and earn medalist honors at the LPGA Tour's qualifying school. The five-round event was held at the Champions Course at LPGA International.
With rounds of 67, 72, 71, 71 and 73, the 24-year-old Song finished 90 holes at 6-under par 354. Song, who played her rookie LPGA season in 2004 when she was runner-up in the Kraft Nabisco Championship, the best finish of her career, struggled on Sunday. She parred five in a row starting at the 12th hole before bogeying the 17th, then got par on the final hole for the two-stroke victory.
"Any time you enter a competition and come out on top, you feel pretty good," said Song, who earned $5,000. "With this weather, I couldn't hit it as close as I did the last four days, but I still hit it well."
Ending up in second was 17-year-old amateur Jessica Korda, daughter of former tennis professional Petr Korda. Though Korda closed with a 77 in the final round, she still managed to finish 4-under 356. "It was a tough, tough day because it was really windy," said Korda, who turned pro after the final round. "I lost my balance about 20 times. But this is a dream come true.
"I knew I always wanted to turn pro, but I never thought I'd do it this year," she added. "I've had a really good year and I'm so glad I get to finish it out here, turning pro at LPGA Q-school."
The top-20 players earned LPGA Tour cards for 2010. Only five players - Jimin Jeong (71), Danah Ford Bordner (68), Kimberly Kim (70), Alison Whitaker (71) and Tiffany Joh (71) - broke par on Sunday.
Jeong finished alone in third, Bordner in a tie for fourth and Kim T14th, while Whitaker and Joh ended up outside the top 20.
Others earning cards included: Reilley Rankin, Pornanong Phatlum, Dewi Claire Schreefel, Belen Mozo, Jeehae Lee, Nicole Hage, Angela Oh, Dori Carter, Pernilla Lindberg, Mollie Fankhauser, Jennie Lee, Jin Young Pak, Stephanie Sherlock, Sara Brown and Christel Boeljon.
The players who finished between 21st and 30th will go into Category 16 on the priority list, while those between 31st and 40th are in Category 19. Players in both categories can enter LPGA Monday qualifying tournaments and gain possible entry into full-field events.