Muni He is in her first year on the Symetra Tour. A 15-under par overall performance in the inaugural Prasco Charity Championship at TPC River's Bend landed He her first professional title on Sunday, July 1. It included a bogey-free, 5-under par 67 final round. The win also marks He down in history, as she claimed the crown at the first LPGA Tour family event contested at a course owned and operated by the PGA TOUR. After spending two semesters at the University of Southern California, He opted to forego her final three years of collegiate eligibility. She made her professional debut on December 6 at the Omega Dubai Ladies Masters, the last event on the 2017 Ladies European Tour schedule.
As a rookie on the Symetra Tour, stepping into this new environment has been exciting, yet terrifying. Turning professional after playing for two semesters at USC was not something that I had planned for originally as a junior golfer. USC was my dream school and it always will be, but I knew playing professionally was a goal that I was ready to achieve. During the summer of 2017, after discussing with my parents, I decided that playing in Q-School and the Symetra Tour this year would bring me closer to my dream of ultimately competing on the LPGA Tour.
The Symetra Tour has been a really tough, but good learning experience for me thus far. As a competitive amateur golfer, I always knew that the road to the LPGA would not be easy and truth be told, I was filled with a lot of anxiety coming in, not knowing what the year would hold. I came in with a clouded mindset, feeling a bit lost and afraid that I wouldn’t be able to live up to the expectations.
I felt that I really struggled with my first few events. It was tough adjusting to the lifestyle on the road, competing weeks on end and not seeing many high results shuffle in. By the end of the first four-week stretch, I knew that something had to change and it had to start from within myself. I’ve learned how to enjoy the fun, as well as the tough parts of being on the road. I began to put more emphasis on improving my own game versus stressing about the scores and results, which in the end I can’t control.
When the June stretch came around, I knew that I was coming close to fixing some of the main issues I was previously struggling with in my game. With each event, I slowly started to gain more confidence within myself. I had my first top-10 finish at the Forsyth Classic and seeing my name up on the leaderboard was a moment of realization for me that maybe I should be up there after all. Even though I missed the cut by one stroke the following week, I was still feeling confident about my game and knew I had the consistency within me.
The week of the Prasco Charity Championship started without much of a thought. To have it be the last event of the stretch, I was basically pulling myself together to push through the fourth and final week of our stretch. I remembered wrapping up my first practice round and realizing how fatigued my body was and how challenging the course seemed. All I had in mind was just to go out there and do my best. Never would I have thought that I would end up winning my first Symetra Tour event. I played my own game every round and really tried not to worry about the scores.
I think the month of June taught me so much about how to think on and off the course, something that I’ve never realized before. It has helped me with my self-confidence, knowing that I have what it takes to win. I think all these learning experiences will help me tremendously going into the second half of the season. I know it’s definitely not an easy road, but I have learned to put emphasis on enjoying the journey, and embracing the good with the bad. It feels good to be one small step closer to my dream, and I couldn’t be more excited for what the rest of this year holds.