Struggles are nothing new to Andrew Yun.
By ZACH VAN HART, ISLAND PACKET – He spent much of 2007 revamping his swing and much of Sunday slugging through a round that tested his fortitude. But a year¹s worth of struggles produced a weekend to remember, as Yun defeated Julian Suri on the second sudden-death playoff hole to win the Verizon Junior Heritage on a sunny Sunday at Harbour Town Golf Links.
Despite a 3-over-par 74 in the final round, Yun¹s first-round lead stood up for a monumental title. The same was true for girls winner Marta Silva Zamora, who fired a 4-over 75 but won anyway by two strokes. On a pristine day at famed Harbour Town, the leaders stumbled but never tumbled and showed mettle down the stretch.
For 16-year-old Yun, it was a breakthrough victory. The Chandler, Ariz., resident endured a self-described terrible ¹07, one that forced him to reconnect with his former coach in Seattle, where Yun moved from in 2006. Yun, playing in his third Junior Heritage, couldn¹t suppress a grin after Saturday¹s 4-under round or Sunday¹s gritty performance.
³To win any tournament is a big deal, especially one like the Verizon Junior Heritage,² he said. ³It came after such a bad slump. It¹s like I was reborn again.²
Yun made few mistakes but struggled putting. He finally broke through on the par-3 17th, sinking a 25-foot putt for birdie his only of the round. Yun gave the stroke back with a bogey on No. 18, setting the stage for his playoff against Suri.
Coincidentally, Yun and Suri also tied here last year, finishing in seventh place. This time, their gridlock forced them to return to the par-4 No. 1 for the tournament¹s first playoff since 2005. After both parred the hole, they moved to the 332-yard ninth. Both players ran into trouble immediately. Yun landed in the left rough, 100 yards from the pin, his path deterred by nearby trees.
But Suri had bigger issues, his ball laying inches from a tree trunk in brush right of the fairway and his path to the green completed obstructed. Later describing his lie as a bad break after his tee shot ricocheted off a tree, Suri needed two strokes to punch out to the fairway and carded a double bogey.
After a risky line-drive 5-iron put him in a back bunker, Yun eventually sank a 2-foot bogey putt to preserve the win.
|Andrew Yun(Sudden death)||68||74||142|
|Tommy Chung Hao Mou||72||72||144|