Published: Mon, April 08, 2019
Sport | By Ruben Hill

Olivia Mehaffey prepares to make history after qualifying to play at Augusta

Olivia Mehaffey prepares to make history after qualifying to play at Augusta

Colorado's Jennifer Kupcho, the reigning NCAA champion from Wake Forest, shot 5-under-par 67 in Sunday's final round at Augusta National for a 54-hole total of 10-under 206 and a four-shot victory over Mexico's Maria Fassi, a senior on Arkansas' golf team.

England's Meghan McClaren is the leading female in the field after she opened her account with a seven-under-par 65.

Zoe Campos (75), the 16-year-old from Valencia, Calif., who jointly led with Kupcho at four-under through the first round, dropped to seventh place at one under par, one shot behind Japan's Yuka Yasuda (70).

"There's no bigger stage than this for amateur golf".

Augusta National's all-male status led to a 2003 protest across the street from the club but it was not until August 2012 when businesswoman Darla Moore and former US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice were named the club's first women members.

The duo will take part in the practice round at Augusta National on Friday but did not make the cut to Saturday's final round. Arrive on site, walk out to the back of the clubhouse and just look, just look at what was there in front of me and just be, wow, I'm kind of living this dream that I had as a kid.

In a dramatic battle between two 21-year-old U.S. collegiate stars, Kupcho had three birdies and an eagle in the last six holes in firing a five-under par 67 to finish 54 holes on 10-under 206 for a four-stroke victory over Fassi, who fired her third consecutive 70.

Both parred 17 and Fassi made bogey at 18 before Kupcho concluded with a roar-raising 20-foot birdie putt.

"She played a great game".

Trailing Fassi by two shots, Kupcho exited Amen Corner by erasing the Mexican's advantage with a brilliant eagle on the par-five 13th. Perhaps Anna was a little nervous as she drew her driver back and prepared to launch the first shot in a women's competition on the greatest golf course in the United States. The final three hours of play will air on NBC sports starting at noon.

"We both are good friends, so I think it will be a lot of fun, and we're both good at golf - really good at golf", she said.

Kupcho received the champion's trophy in Butler Cabin, where Masters winners are presented with green jackets, and Augusta National chairman Fred Ridley told her, "You're part of Augusta National history now". "I'm going to pretend it's the final round of the event and see what I can shoot out there".

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