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Olson can't rally in final round, but records best finish of LPGA season

Fargo golfer finishes five shots behind winner at HSBC Women's World Championship

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Fargo's Amy Olson shot a 3-under-par 69 Friday to take the lead at the HSBC Women's World Championship in Singapore after 36 holes. IMG/LPGA photo

The first victory will have to wait, but it was still a strong week for Amy Olson.

The Fargo golfer shot a final-round 70 Sunday at the HSBC Women's World Championship in Singapore, finishing the 72-hole tournament at 10 under par. That was five shots behind winner Sung Hyun Park, but still good for a tie for fifth place and Olson's best finish in her three starts this year on the LPGA Tour.

It was her second top-10 finish of the year and netted her $59,005. Olson has yet to win on the LPGA Tour, but she's had a strong start to 2019. She's earned $97,833 for the year, 18th on the money list. She moved up to 41st in the world women's golf rankings.

Park of South Korea won her sixth LPGA Tour victory after shooting a final-round 8-under-par 64 at Sentosa Golf Club, sealing the win by two shots with a 15-under total. Park birdied her first three holes and made two additional birdies on the front with a bogey on No. 8, then returned with four more birdies on the back, outplaying runner-up Minjee Lee (-13) and third-place finishers Jin Young Ko and Azahara Munoz (-11).

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"Very pleased," Olson said immediately after her round. "You start the year, and it's good to start with and get some momentum going into the season. I had a Top-10 in Australia. I had two really good rounds in Thailand, and whatever this ends up being, so very pleased with it."

Olson began the final round three shots behind leader Ariya Jutanugarn, the top-ranked player in the world. But, like Jutanugarn, Olson struggled early. She bogeyed the the par 4 third hole, bounced back with a birdie on the par 3 fourth, but bogeyed the par 5 fifth.

At the same time, Park birdied five of her first seven holes to take the tournament lead.

"I had two bogeys. I had a bogey on 3. Missed the green right, which is the side you really can't miss on to that pin, and I didn't get -- because I was short-sided I just hit a shot that didn't quite get up the hill and rolled all the way back to my feet and obviously had a harder shot coming up. Made an up-and-down for bogey," Olson said. "Went for the green on 5 and hit a really good hybrid and honestly it was a foot off carrying the number that I needed. And so that was kind of disappointing to start that because obviously you can gain a shot on the field there.

"But you know, I bounced back really well. I stayed in it and just never gave up, and fortunately, you know, some birdies came kind of on the back nine. Made some solid par putts coming in because that finishing stretch is not easy. So I'm really pleased with how I played."

Olson made birdies on Nos. 8, 12 and 14 to rally into the top five.

"You know, Thursday I made great putts and hit it terrible. The rest of the week I hit it pretty well and just wasn't putting well," she said. "Then I kind of figured out, I think kind of what I was doing yesterday afternoon. Anyway, I was rolling the putts a lot better today."

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Related Topics: GOLFAMY OLSON
Mike McFeely is a columnist for The Forum of Fargo-Moorhead. He began working for The Forum in the 1980s while he was a student studying journalism at Minnesota State University Moorhead. He's been with The Forum full time since 1990, minus a six-year hiatus when he hosted a local radio talk-show.
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