South Korean Kim Sei-young smashed the LPGA 72-hole scoring record on Sunday (July 8), winning the Thornberry Creek LPGA Classic with a stunning 31-under par total.
The 25-year-old, who won her last LPGA title in May 2017 at the Lorena Ochoa Match Play in Mexico, secured the victory with seven birdies in the final round on Sunday, reports Efe. The 32 holes under par are another record, breaking the mark of 30 set by Brittany Lincicome, Gerina Pillar and Lexi Thompson, all three at the 2017 Pure Silk-Bahamas LPGA Classic. Kim's performance included 31 birdies, one eagle and - proving she is human after all - one double bogey on the 17th in the second round.
"Just before starting (Sunday), I was just setting my goal as a bogey-free round", Kim said. "I really feel incredible". But after the major tournament, I realized, 'OK, I can do that.' If I imagine, it comes true.
Victory at Oneida never seemed in doubt for Kim, who collected $300,000 in prize money having held the lead after her second round of 65. Anna Nordqvist, Amy Yang and Emma Talley finished joint third, 11 behind Kim.
Hataoka, who narrowly lost the Women's PGA Championship last Sunday in a three-person playoff, nearly canceled out seven birdies with a double bogey and then a quadruple bogey on No. 17.
In the back nine, Kim added three more birdies and hit no bogeys to become the first golfer on the LPGA Tour to go 31 under par at a tournament. "She had a heck of a week and I'm really excited for her".
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Kirk had led by one after a first-round 62, but she couldn't get it going on the greens Friday and settled for a 71. She's a great player. During the final round, Kim showed outstanding accuracy with her iron shots, with a Greens in Regulation percentage of 94.4.
She was ranked as high as number eight in the world previous year after her win in Mexico and has struggled for much of 2018.
"Just trust yourself", she said.
Kim won by five over Lydia Ko when she shot 27 under in the Founders Cup two years ago. But she dropped two shots at the par-five 15th when she hit one ball in the water and another into a hazard. Kim earned her full time status card on the LPGA Tour after finishing tied for ninth at the 2014 LPGA Qualifying Tournament.
"First hole, my second shot was nearly a tap-in birdie, so (I) started really solid", said Kim, who is seeking a seventh LPGA title.
Kim and Brooke Henderson are the only players to have registered LPGA wins in 2015, 2016, 2017 and 2018.