Defending champion Kang to face Jutanugarn in U.S. Women's Am final

By
Associated Press

Series: Other Tour

Defending champion Danielle Kang and Thailand's Moriya Jutanugarn advanced to the U.S. Women's Amateur final Saturday at Rhode Island Country Club.

Kang, the 18-year-old Pepperdine star from Westlake Village, Calif., beat University of Alabama player Brooke Pancake, from Chattanooga, Tenn., 1-up.

The 17-year-old Jutanugarn edged LSU's Austin Ernst, the NCAA champion from Seneca, S.C., 1-up.

Kang is trying to become the first player to win two years in a row since Kelli Kuehne in 1995-96.

"If I win, I am pretty convinced that I am ready to go (pro)," Kang said. "It would be three amateur (victories) in a row for me going back to last year's (Women's) Amateur. "

Jutanugarn, the low amateur last month in the U.S. Women's Open, is attempting to become the fourth Thai-born player to win a USGA championship. Her 15-year-old sister, Ariya, won the U.S. Girls' Junior two weeks ago, and has served as Moriya's caddie since being eliminated in the second round Thursday.

The 36-hole final is Sunday.