DYE CAPTURES THIRD SYMETRA TOUR TITLE
ALBANY, N.Y. — A final round 4-under par 67 today in the Fuccillo Kia Classic of NY proved to be enough for Kendall Dye (Edmond, Oklahoma) to capture her third Symetra Tour title and first since the 2017 Four Winds Invitational.
Dye finished at 10-under par overall and withstood a furious charge from Nontaya Srisawang (Chiang Mai, Thailand), who went 7-under on the afternoon for a solo second result just one shot back.=
“It’s exactly what I was hoping for and I knew something was bound to change for the positive this year,” said Dye, who has conditional status on the LPGA Tour and missed the cut in all eight starts on the big stage. “I’ve been playing good golf and had great hope that I could turn in a result like this.”
The previous best for Dye at Capital Hills at Albany Golf Course was tied for second place in 2013.
In addition to her victory last year in South Bend, Ind., this championship also joins the 2014 IOA Golf Classic fighting for space on the trophy mantel. Even so, this win is every bit as unique as the first.
“It’s always special to win a professional golf tournament,” said Dye, after recording five birdies and only one bogey. “Proves to me that hard work and belief is everything.”
With the event shortened to 36 holes because of Mother Nature, pairings today were as if the field was playing a normal second round. Therefore, leaders did not get placed together, but it was nothing the Tour veteran hasn’t seen before.
“You kind of have to always assume that the people in the tournament are going to play lights out, and it’s really hard to follow yesterday having nine birdies,” Dye said. “I really wanted to shoot 63 today because I’ve never touched it. Then I had a slower start and while we were out there mid-round I said let’s get to 10-under.”
Nonetheless, it still seemed like those atop the leaderboard were in the same group because they were. Dye was joined by Hyemin Kim (Seoul, Republic of Korea) and Clariss Guce (Artesia, California), who opened play with three consecutive birdies to draw even with Dye early on.
The momentum created by her playing partner only fueled the University of Oklahoma alumna more.
“Clariss got off to a beautiful start making tons of putts and you just have to accept that, not let it rattle you,” said Dye. “Since she was near the lead it kept me going, made me play smart and buckle down. It also made me play a little aggressive at times.”
Guce ended with a solid 4-under par day, carding only one bogey to go along with five birdies. She ended in a tie for third with Elizabeth Szokol (Winnetka, Illinois) and Stephanie Na (Adelaide, Australia) at 8-under overall.
“She played amazing today,” Guce said. “When you play with someone having a good round, especially Kendall, you kind of feed off it. She hits it close, you want to hit it closer. She makes a birdie, you want to make one too. I had fun and love competing with her.”
SRISAWANG GOES LOW IN FINAL ROUND
Already with two top-10 finishes this season, Nontaya Srisawang added to it today with an outstanding final round performance in the Fuccillo Kia Classic of NY on the Capital Hills at Albany Golf Course.
The 10th year professional was four shots off the lead and in 19th place entering the day. That deficit was quickly erased when she fired a 5-under par 31 going out, launching her up the leaderboard and right into contention.
“I didn’t think about it overnight,” said Srisawang. “I just told myself that I need to see the ball and think about my tempo.”
A birdie on the par-5 12th hole tied Srisawang for the lead at 8-under par at the time, but then some nerves got the better of her shortly after.
“I saw the scoreboard on No. 15 that I made it up to the leader and then I made bogey on that hole,” Srisawang said. “I told myself that I still have a chance to go up to the lead again. On the back nine I didn’t shoot like on the front. We tried something with my putter and talked with the people in my group to make me relaxed.”
She picked herself up after the bogey with a birdie on No. 16 then thought about the possibilities ahead. Coming in the rest of the way, Srisawang carded a par and birdie, respectively, to conclude the tournament at 9-under par overall.
Walking out of the scoring tent, Srisawang thought it might be enough to at least finish tied for the lead.
“I am really happy with what I did today,” said Srisawang. “It was hard for me on No. 17 because I don’t like the layout, but I told myself to put it in the fairway and make two putts. Then on the last hole I was excited, but my caddy said to play focused and complete my goal.”
Now heading into an off week, there is only one thing on the mind of Srisawang, who jumped from No. 38 in the Volvik Race for the Card to No. 18.
“Just go eat Thai food everyday and drink bubble tea everyday,” Srisawang said laughingly.
VOLVIK RACE FOR THE CARD STANDINGS
Following the 13th tournament of the 2018 Symetra Tour season, the Volvik Race for the Card saw a good amount of shifting within the top-10.
The win and $18,750 winner’s check launched Kendall Dye up 46 spots in the rankings to No. 20, having earned $27,401 through five events played. Here is a look at the current top-10 heading into the week off and before the PHC Classic in Milwaukee at Brown Deer Park Golf Course from Aug. 10-12:
- Dottie Ardina (Laguna, Philippines) - $59,672
- Stephanie Meadow (Jordanstown, Northern Ireland) - $53,375
- Jenny Haglund (Karlstad, Sweden) - $49,751
- Isi Gabsa (Munich, Germany) - $48,278
- Elizabeth Szokol (Winnetka, Illinois) - $47,292
- Eun Jeong Seong (Yongin, Republic of Korea) - $45,763
- Ruixin Liu (Dalian, China) - $42,355
- Stephanie Kono (Honolulu, Hawaii) - $40,682
- Karen Chung (Livingston, New Jersey) - $38,955
- Min Seo Kwak (Seoul, Republic of Korea) - $37,699
KENDALL DYE'S WINNER'S INTERVIEW