Jul 24, 2017
In-Kyung Kim holds the trophy after winning the Marathon Classic golf tournament at Highland Meadows Golf Club in Sylvania, Ohio. / AP-Yonhap
South Korean Kim In-kyung
has picked up her second LPGA win of the season.
Kim rallied to captured the Marathon Classic at the par-71 Highland Meadows Golf Club in Sylvania, Ohio, on Sunday (local time), thanks to a blistering 63 in the weather-interrupted final round.
Kim In-kyung had a four-round total of 21-under 263 to beat American Lexi Thompson by four strokes.
The 29-year-old, who took home US$240,000 in the winner's check, now has six career LPGA victories. She ended a near six-year drought in October last year and won the ShopRite LPGA Classic in June this year.
Kim In-kyung poses with the champion's trophy after winning the LPGA Tour's Marathon Classic at Highland Meadows Golf Club in Sylvania, Ohio, on July 23, 2017. (Yonhap)
Kim becomes just the second multiple champion of the 2017 season, after fellow South Korean Ryu So-yeon. Eight different South Koreans have combined for 10 wins in 20 LPGA events so far in 2017.
This is the first multiple-win season on the LPGA Tour for Kim, who has been playing on the tour since 2007.
Kim In-kyung started the day at 13-under, two behind the overnight leader, Nelly Korda, in second place. And Kim wasted little time making her charge, with three birdies in her first four holes en route to a six-under 28 on the front nine.
The play was suspended due to rain after Kim completed her 14th hole and held a four-shot advantage over two Americans: Gerina Piller and Thompson. When play resumed, Kim promptly picked up consecutive birdies at the 15th and 16th to lock down her title.
Kim came into this tournament having missed her last two cuts but shot the best score of the day in the final round to cap off her rally.
Kim In-kyung said she felt "comfortable" with the pin positions, but above all, it was her mental sharpness that made the difference.
"I really didn't expect anything. Maybe I think that's why I played really well today," Kim was quoted as saying on LPGA.com. "Really good names are on top of the leaderboard, and I just wanted to go out and make the most out of it, and today I was able to do that."
Much like her LPGA career, the 2017 season has been a roller-coaster ride for Kim. Aside from her two wins, Kim only has one other top-20 finish this year. But the South Korean insisted she feels great about her game with two more majors -- the Ricoh Women's British Open in August and the Evian Championship in September -- on the horizon.
"I'll be more confident going into the tournaments," she said. "But at the same time, each tournament has a very unique style, and just getting used to the golf course and having the knowledge before a tournament starts, I think that's the key to play well. So I look forward to more opportunities."