Top-ranked amateur Rose Zhang sets course record, takes U.S. Girls’ Junior lead

·2 min read

“Legit could have been a 59. It was a clinic.”

Doug Hurson had a front-row seat to Rose Zhang’s course record 8-under 62 in the second round of the U.S. Girls’ Junior on Tuesday and was blown away by the 18-year-old’s performance.

“One of those rounds I will remember every shot,” added Hurson, Zhang’s caddie this week at Columbia Country Club in Chevy Chase, Maryland, where he’s a two-time club champion. The previous record was 65.

After a 1-under 69 on Monday, Zhang entered the day three shots back but quickly took the lead from Cindy Kou, an incoming USC freshman. Zhang started on the back nine – players tee off on Nos. 1 and 11 this week – and began the round with four straight pars. From there the incoming Stanford freshman would birdie eight of her last 14 holes, including four in a row at the turn from Nos. 18-3.

U.S. Girls’ Junior: Leaderboard

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“I just had really good course management,” Zhang said of her bogey-free 62. “Every single shot I hit, I felt confident with what I had in my hands. When I went up to the greens, I over-read most of them, which you have to do on this course, and a lot of putts dropped. Everything worked pretty well for me, even my misses I was able to work with them.”

At 9 under and atop the leaderboard, the reigning U.S. Women’s Amateur champion now shifts her attention to match play and Wednesday’s Round of 64.

“I’m very excited, I’m definitely going to be a little more aggressive in match play,” said Zhang of her mindset going forward this week. “That’s usually my game plan.”

More aggressive after an 8-under 62? Good luck, field.