Winning putts on the final hole of Cog Hill’s Dubsdread course highlighted Thursday’s finish of the Golfweek Midwest Junior in Lemont, Ill.
Riya Ahuja of Singapore birdied the par-4 18th to win the girls-division title by a shot while Houston’s Ryan Bailey made a winning putt on then third playoff hole to defeat Matt Murlick of Winnetka, Ill., in the boys competition.
“I really wasn’t under pressure,” Ahuja, a Class of 2018 golfer, said of her winning putt, which gave her a final-round, 4-over 76. “I just put it in.”
Ahuja, who had bogeyed her previous two holes prior to No. 18, is expected to stay in the U.S. for two months to play summer golf. This event is the first of a scheduled six for Ahuja.
Alexis Miestowski of Schererville, Ind., finished second at 19 over, a shot back of Ahja’s 18-over total.
On the boys side, Bailey and Murlick, a future collegian at Marquette, each finished 36 holes at 2-under 142. Bailey fired a final-round 70 to reach the playoff after Murlick tripled-bogeyed No. 18.
“I knew on 18 where I stood,” Bailey said. “It’s funny because I told him, ‘Well, at least I got second.’ I probably spoke too soon.”
He did. After three playoff holes (Nos. 1, 9 and 10), Bailey, who is signed to play at South Mountain Junior College, made about an 8-footer to win on No. 10.
“I’m not the greatest in playoffs,” Bailey said, “but this playoff I didn’t want to make the mistake.”
On Thursday at Cog Hill, he didn’t.