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Rose Zhang Clinches Second Professional Title with Late Rally at LPGA Founders Cup

Posted : 13 May 2024

Rose Zhang clinched her second professional title in dramatic fashion at the LPGA Founders Cup in New Jersey, staging a remarkable late surge to overcome Madelene Sagstrom. Zhang, a 20-year-old from California, delivered a scorching finish with four birdies in her final five holes, crafting a stunning six-under par 66 to secure victory at 24-under, two strokes ahead of Sweden's Sagstrom.


The tournament, held at the Upper Montclair Country Club in Clifton amidst cool and overcast conditions, witnessed Sagstrom, the overnight leader, appearing poised for triumph after a commanding display that saw her three shots clear following her fifth birdie on the 12th hole.


Despite Sagstrom's early dominance, Zhang steadily closed the gap, displaying nerves of steel as the pressure intensified. Trailing by three shots, Zhang ignited her charge with a birdie on the par-five 14th, narrowing the margin to just one stroke with a flawless tee-shot on the par-three 15th.


 Sagstrom faltered on the 16th, succumbing to a bogey after an errant chip, allowing Zhang to seize a share of the lead. Undeterred by the tense atmosphere, Zhang continued her assault, sinking a crucial birdie putt on the 17th before sealing her triumph with another birdie on the 18th, displaying remarkable composure under pressure.


Reflecting on her victory, Zhang expressed her elation, acknowledging the challenge posed by Sagstrom's exceptional play. Despite the daunting circumstances, Zhang never wavered in her determination, embracing the opportunity to compete against a formidable opponent.


Meanwhile, Sagstrom, visibly emotional, conceded defeat graciously, acknowledging Zhang's stellar performance and lamenting her missed opportunity for a second LPGA Tour victory. In the unpredictable realm of golf, Sagstrom's resilience in defeat serves as a testament to the sport's unforgiving nature, where victory can swiftly slip away even from the most deserving contenders.


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