ERIN, WIS.--I've been harping on it for a few weeks now, but if you need any more proof that the center of the women's college golf universe is residing in the City of Angels, just look at what's transpired this week at the U.S. Women's Amateur Public Links Championship. Of the 64 players that advanced to match play here at Erin Hills GC, six are either current or future UCLA players, while two were current or future Southern California. In today's semifinals we had USC incoming freshman Jennifer Song beat UCLA incoming freshman Stephanie Kono, 2 up, while UCLA All-American__Tiffany Joh__ beat UCLA verbal commitment Tiffany Lua, 4 and 3. Somewhere in sunny Southern California,Carrie Forysth and Andrea Gaston are smiling.
Thus, we've got another UCLA/USC showdown in the Saturday's 36-hole final. On paper, you have to give the edge to the Bruins' Joh, who won this tournament in 2006 and is coming off a runner-up finish at the NCAA Championship last month. (Song's biggest claim to fame is being the low amateur at the 2006 U.S. Women's Open.) She also made six birdies in her first seven holes during the semifinal match with Lua.
As I described in a feature story I wrote on Joh before the NCAA Championship, the 21-year-old from San Diego is the queen of self-deprecation. Did you expect anything less than when she described her coming showdown with soon-to-be USC rival? Eluding to the Bruins' six-stroke loss to SC at last month's NCAA Championship: "Even if I don't play my best golf tomorrow and don't win, I mean I am pretty much used to losing to Trojans these day."