Yani Tseng showed Honolulu’s Michelle Wie how it is done in pressure-packed moments as she fired a final-round 6-under 65 today to win the P&G NW Arkansas Championship played at the Pinnacle Country Club in Rogers. Ark.
Her 54-hole total of 13-under 200 left her one shot clear of Wie (69—201), who stumbled a bit down the stretch to finish second as the Punahou School graduate returns to Stanford University in two weeks.
Starting her final round with a three-shot lead, Wie couldn’t fend off Tseng, who caught the 20-year-old with a birdie at the par-5 14th and then passed her with another birdie at the par-3 15th. Tseng’s Sunday finish on the back nine was an impressive 5-under 30.
It was the same nine Wie fashioned a 28 yesterday, but these holes weren’t as kind today as she only managed a 2-under 34. Mika Miyazatio, who equaled Wie’s 64 of yesterday, was alone in third at 10-under 203.
Wie was trying to win back to back after capturing the Canadian Open two weeks ago. Going to the par-5 18th, Wie trailed by one after a big birdie-2 at the difficult par-3 17th. Tseng settled for a two-putt par after taking a two-shot advantage at the 16th as Wie bogeyed.
Wie eagled the par-5 18th yesterday with a 40-footer below the hole. But it wasn’t meant to be today as both players birdied the last. Tseng, who won two of the four majors this year, fell just short of becoming the world’s No. 1-ranked player with the win. Japan’s Ai Miyazato remains the best in the world.