Austin Ernst moves into the top 20 of the Women’s World Amateur Golf Ranking following the biggest win of her life. The Louisiana State University player became the first freshman to win the NCAA Women’s Championship since Jennifer Rosales in 1998 after rounds of 72, 66, 77 and 66 for a 7-under-par total of 281 and a three shot win over Kelli Shean of Arkansas.
Ernst, from Seneca, South Carolina, is the first woman golfer from LSU to win the NCAA Championship in the 32 years the women’s golf programme has been running. She is only the third LSU golfer, male or female, to become NCAA champion, and the first in 70 years.
A final round hole in one on the second hole of the Traditions Golf Club in Bryan, Texas, propelled Ernst to victory. She hit an 8-iron from 162 yards for the first hole in one of her life. It couldn’t have come at a better time.
Ernst moves 29 places to 13th on the WAGR table as a result.
Tiffany Lua joins Ernst in this week’s top 20, also thanks to a hole in one. Lua, a student at UCLA, aced the second hole in her third round 70. She eventually finished joint 4th and moves eight places in the world order to 20th.
World number three Mitsuki Katahira solidified her status as the third best woman amateur in the world with victory in the NJCAA Women’s National Championship. The Daytona State College player returned rounds of 74, 73, 72 and 71 for a 2-over-par 290 and a three shot victory over team mate Ericka Schneider.
Louise Kenney won the Scottish Ladies Amateur Championship at Machrihanish, defeating Eilidh Briggs 4&3. Kenney, who spent four years at Iowa State University, improves her ranking 70 places to world number 135.
Kevin Tway moves to third place on this week’s World Amateur Golf Ranking following victory in the NCAA So Central-Colorado Region at Colorado National Golf Club in Erie, Colorado. Rounds of 72, 65 and 69 for a 10-under-par total of 210 gave Tway a one shot victory over Scott Pinckney of Arizona State. It’s Tway’s second win of the year.
Luke Guthrie of the University of Illinois breaks into this week’s top 10 in 9th spot, a move of 13 places, following joint first with Michigan’s Lion Kim in the NCAA Central-Indiana Regional at Wolf Run Golf Club in Zionsville, Indiana. The pair finished two strokes ahead of the field after finishing on 8-under-par for the three rounds.
Kim moves into the world top 50 as a result, improving his ranking 12 places to world number 41.
Abrham Ancer also moves into the top 50 after winning the NCAA East-VA Tech Regional over the Pete Dye Course of Virginia Tech. Ancer, a student at the University of Oklahoma, returned rounds of 70, 71 and 69 for a 6-under-par total of 210 and a two shot victory over three players. Ancer moves 41 places to world number 32.
Great Britain & Ireland Walker Cup squad players Paul Cutler and Darren Wright improved their chances of making the 10-man team to meet the United States September 10-11 at Royal Aberdeen Golf Club.
Englishman Wright won the Welsh Open Stroke Play Championship at St Pierre Golf Club in Chepstow. He was the only player to break par for four days. Rounds of 71, 72, 70 and 71 for a 4-under-par total of 284 was good enough for a four shot victory over Ben Stow. Wright moves 69 places on the WAGR table to 103.
Cutler triumphed by two shots in the Irish Amateur Close Championship at Shannon Golf Club. The Portstewart Amateur improves his ranking by two spots to 47th.