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Ledwein pulls away to win Women’s State Am

Former Laker and NDSU golfer Natalie Roth holds a two-shot lead heading to Wednesday's final round of the Minnesota Golf Association State Women’s Amateur tournament at White Bear Lake Yacht Club. NDSU Athletics

New Prague’s Taylor Ledwein has had a hot summer and it continued with a four-stroke victory at the Minnesota Golf Association (MGA) Women’s Amateur Championship at White Bear Lake Yacht Club.

Ledwein shot a 2-under par 72 to claim a four-stroke victory over Natalie Roth, Sophia Yoemans and Grace Kellar.

According to Nick Hunter of MGA, the victory was Ledwein’s third state title and second major championship of the 2018 season.

TAYLOR LEDWEIN - W.P. Ryan / Minnesota Golf Association

“This one means more because everyone is here,” Ledwein told Hunter in a post-round interview. “It’s just a great field from Leigh [Klasse], Brenda [Williams] to Claudia [Pilot], Olivia [Herrick] and Natalie and the younger players. To come out on top it really shows that my game is at the top point right now.”

Entering Wednesday’s round two shots behind Roth, Ledwein carded birdie on the opening hole, but was unable to make up ground as Roth rolled in a two-putt birdie as well.

Ledwein would take the lead for good after an errant tee shot at the par-3 third proved fatal for Roth, who took triple-bogey to fall behind Ledwein by one stroke. Both players carded bogey at the long, par-3 eighth hole and Ledwein maintained a slim lead to the final nine.

Roth carded three consecutive three-putts on the final three holes to finish in a three-way tie for third with Yoemans and Kellar at 3-under par 219, while Ledwein cruised to the finish line with consecutive pars to card a 7-under par 215.

After tying a course record the previous day to take the 36-hole lead, a final-round 78 was a disappointing finish for Roth, but one she’ll use as motivation in the coming weeks.

“I’m obviously a little disappointed but like any tournament, you learn a lot,” Roth said. “I was trying to stay mentally with it, which is why I enjoyed having a caddie this week, because we could be in our own little bubble. You have to take away as many positives as you can. I was hitting the ball great all three days and I didn’t miss many fairways, but you can always work on the short game. The course was in perfect condition all three days and hats off to Taylor, she played like the winner should play. The biggest difference—everyone is affected by nerves, but when I feel nerves it affects my putter. Taking control and recognizing that will help me in the future. It’s a good momentum builder for what I want to do in the next couple of weeks going to [Qualifying School], so I’m happy with the tournament and I know that I have some things to work on.”

Roth flies to Palm Springs August 11 to compete in Q-school at Mission Hills in Rancho Mirage, Calif.

Click here for Nick Hunter's full recap of the final round.

NATALIE ROTH - W.P. Ryan / Minnesota Golf Association

Roth leads by two headed to State Am final round

Natalie Roth tied a course record by shooting 6-under par 68 to take a two-stroke lead over Taylor Ledwein of New Prague in Tuesday’s second round..

Roth was on fire early. She birdied seven of the first nine holes against a bogey at the second, including a string of six straight birdies on the final six holes to go out at 6-under 31.

Roth said her start was a little bit of both scoring conditions and catching a hot streak.

“It was a fun day; it didn’t feel like anything crazy,” she said. “I was just hitting greens, leaving myself anywhere between five to 15-footers.”

The back nine was closer to even with seven pars, a birdie at the par-5 13th hole and a bogey on 17 to finish 31-36 (68).

Ledwein had five birdies and an eagle on her round of 69 (36-33) to sit at -5, two shots back of the lead..

“Overall, very happy with the last two days,” Roth said. “I’ll be approaching tomorrow like any other round. Starting from scratch and trying to give myself some more opportunities.”

Grace Kellar of Olympic Hills Golf Club is in sole possession of third place at 1-under (147). Sophia Yoemans was in fourth place at even par (148).

Kate Smith was in a three-way tie for eighth place at +4 (75-77 152).

Sydney Busker was tied for 20th place a +9 (74-83 157).

Matty Tschider was tied for 46th place at +23 (88-83 171).

Minnesota Golf Association State Women’s Amateur tournament

Championship Flight (Final), Wednesday, July 25, White Bear Lake Yacht Club

1 Taylor Ledwein New Prague Golf Club -7 (74-69-72 215)

T2 Natalie Roth Moorhead Country Club -3 (73-68-78 219)

T2 Grace Kellar Olympic Hills Golf Club -3 (74-73-72 219)

T2 Sophia Yoemans Mississippi National -3 (73-75-71 219)

T5 Kate Smith Detroit Country Club +3 (75-77-73 225)

T5 Emma Groom Olympic Hills +3 (74-76-75 225)

T5 Stephanie Herzog Mississippi National +3 (77-74-74 225)

8 Athena Yang Edinburgh USA +7 (74-76-79 229)

T15 Sydney Busker Wildflower +11 (74-83-76 233)

T45 Matlyn Tschider Wildflower +33 (88-83-84 255)

(Field of 59 golfers)

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