Former Gorman standout Park snags second LPGA win of year


KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia - Inbee Park rallied to win the LPGA Malaysia on Sunday for her second victory of the year, closing with a 4-under 67 to beat fellow South Korean player Na Yeon Choi by two strokes.

Park, a former Bishop Gorman High School standout, took the lead with a tap-in birdie on the par-4 13th and moved two shots ahead with another short birdie putt on the par-4 14th. She got away with bogeys on the final two holes when Choi made double bogey on the par-3 17th in her closing 71.

"I'm very happy to win," said Park, who finished at 15-under 269 and earned $285,000. "I played for the second time here, and it's the first time I've won twice in one year, so I'm really proud of myself for that."

She won the Evian Masters in July in France and has six straight top-three finishes and 10 top-10s in a row. In her previous three events, she tied for second in the Safeway Classic and finished second in the Canadian Women's Open and Women's British Open.

"I think my golf has improved, everything, hitting the ball, chipping, putting. Everything has really improved," said Park, also the 2008 U.S. Women's Open champion. "I worked really hard on my swing. I've been hitting it very solid all year. So that gave me a lot more birdie chances."

Two strokes behind Choi entering the round and three behind with 10 holes left, Park picked up a stroke when the defending champion bogeyed the par-4 ninth, then pulled even with birdies on the par-4 10th and 11th holes. Park holed a 20-foot putt on No. 10 and a 15-footer on No. 11.

Choi's tee shot on the 17th ended up an unplayable lie in a bunker.

Australia's Karrie Webb shot 68 to finish third at 272.

■ PGA - At San Martin, Calif., Sweden's Jonas Blixt won the Frys.com Open for his first PGA Tour title, holing a 4-foot par putt on the final hole for a one-stroke victory at CordeValle.

Blixt, who contended at last week's Justin Timberlake Shriners Hospitals for Children Open at TPC Summerlin, became the third PGA Tour rookie to win this season, closing with a 3-under 68 for a 16-under 268 total.

Tim Petrovic (64) and Jason Kokrak (68) tied for second.

■ CHAMPIONS - At Conover, N.C., Fred Funk made a 2-foot birdie putt on No. 18 to edge Duffy Waldorf by one stroke for the Champions Tour's Greater Hickory Classic title.

The 56-year-old Funk shot 3-under 69 for a three-day total of 15-under 201.

■ EUROPEAN PGA - At Vilamoura, Portugal, Shane Lowry of Ireland won the Portugal Masters, shooting 5-under 66 to edge England's Ross Fisher by one stroke.

Lowry posted a 14-under 270 total.

 

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