Patty Tavatanakit made her professional debut at the U.S. Women’s Open at the end of May after two years of collegiate golf at UCLA. That start was overshadowed by the debuts of Maria Fassi and Jennifer Kupcho with Fassi finishing T12. Except for friends, family and a few Bruins in Charleston, S.C., almost no one would have noticed the long-hitting 19-year-old with more A’s and T’s in her name than Mississippi has S’s.
But if you follow the women’s game, you likely know Tavatanakit now, especially after she made headlines last Sunday at the Thornberry Creek LPGA Classic, playing on a sponsor exemption. Early on Sunday, Tavatanakit shot a final-round, 11-under 61, a round that included three eagles and five birdies. Her 20-under total tied for the lead before the final two groups teed off and proved to be good enough for a T15 finish. Golf Channel even broke away from its coverage of the European Tour’s Dubai Duty Free Irish Open to cover Tavatanakit’s final few holes as she chased 59, Annika Sörenstam’s 18-hole LPGA scoring record....
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