Mexico’s Alejandra Llaneza wins Symetra Tour event
GREENWOOD, S.C. (AP) Mexico’s Alejandra Llaneza birdied the final hole Sunday for a one-stroke victory in the Symetra Tour’s Self Regional Healthcare Foundation Women’s Health Classic.
The 26-year-old Llaneza is the third Mexican winner in Symetra Tour history, following Lorena Ochoa and Violeta Retamoza. Ochoa won three times in 2002, and Retamoza had a victory in 2007.
”It feels amazing, I am just really, really excited,” Llaneza said. ”I’ve been waiting for this moment for a long time. There have been a lot of ups and downs, but I am just really excited to have this opportunity today and come out on top.”
Llaneza closed with a 1-under 71 for a 10-under 278 total at the Links at Stoney Point. She earned $30,000 to jump from 26th to first on the money list with $35,969. The top 10 at the end of the season will earn 2016 LPGA Tour cards.
”Deep inside I wanted to prove to myself that I could win out here,” Llaneza said. ”Of course I want to win on the LPGA Tour, but it was very important to see that I could do it at a big tournament like this. This is a great confidence-booster.”
Casey Grice was second after a 70.
On the par-5 18th, Llaneza hit inside a foot from a greenside bunker to set up her winning birdie.
”I’ve been working a lot on those,” said Llaneza, who will play the Kingsmill Championship on the LPGA Tour next week. ”I took my 60 degree out and honestly I was thinking about making the shot.”
South Korea’s Jimin Kang had a 72 to finish third at 7 under.