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Alison Lee off to quarterfinals at U.S. Amateur

Posted: August 7, 2014 10:20 p.m.
Updated: August 7, 2014 10:20 p.m.

Alison Lee reacts to a putt on the 16th hole during the U.S. Women's Amateur in Glen Cove, N.Y., on Thursday.

 

Earlier in the week, Valencia graduate Alison Lee talked about how valuable it was simply to make par at the difficult Nassau Country Club for the U.S. Women’s Amateur Championship.

Those were prophetic words.

Lee survived her match in the round of 16 on Thursday by making par on the 19th hole of a sudden-death tiebreaker, moving her to the quarterfinals in Glen Clove, N.Y.

Her victory over Eimi Koga concluded a long day for Lee, who played two full rounds of match play.

Earlier in the day, Lee defeated Jennifer Coleman 2-and-1 in the round of 32.

This marks the second straight year Lee had made a deep run in the U.S. Amateur after she advanced to the semifinals of last year’s event. That was her personal best finish in six previous starts at this tournament.

But it all nearly came to an end for the 19-year-old UCLA sophomore when her opponent drained a 15-foot birdie putt on the 18th hole with the match all square.

Lee was left with a 10-foot putt to force the sudden death playoff.

“As soon as I saw her make her putt, negative thoughts were just flowing through my head. But I had to reassure myself that it wasn’t over and I had control of the match because I still had a putt left, and thankfully I made it,” Lee said during an interview with the United States Golf Association.

The two golfers played the par-4 first hole for sudden death, and Lee two-putted for her par to beat out Koga, an 18-year-old sophomore player at the University of Washington.

The early match was less dramatic for Lee. She took a two-hole lead after birdies on holes 7 and 10 and held off Coleman the rest of the way.

“I feel like I could have done a lot better,” Lee told the USGA. “I made a lot of mistakes here and there. But I want to learn from what I did today and be happy that I won.”

Next up for Lee is a matchup against 16-year-old Canadian Brooke Mackenzie Henderson today in the quarterfinals. Henderson is the No. 2 ranked amateur in the world, while Lee is No. 3.

The two will tee off at 9:55 a.m. TV coverage will be shown from noon to 2 p.m. on the Golf Channel.

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