Siyun Liu fires second straight 68 to take her first professional title
In a field stacked with Symetra Tour (now Epson Tour) players and recently minted professional players from big college programs, Siyun Liu (Shanghai, China) posted her second straight 4-under par (68) to hold off hard charging countrywoman Mohan Du (Beijing, China) at the Rio Pinar Orlando Women’s Championship, the second event in the 2022 Winter Series of the new East Coast Women’s Professional Golf Tour. Du (71-70-68/209) also posted a 68 on the day, as she and Liu (70-68-69/207) were the only players to post all three rounds below par. Kissimmee’s Hailey Davidson finished third, firing a 71 on the day, and not before taking a share of the lead at the turn with all three players at 6 under par. It was Liu who stayed steady on the back nine, including a full swing 6 iron punch hook through a three-foot gap in the trees to pin high after pulling her driver off the tee, followed by a pitch to 2 feet to tap in and save par.
This was Siyun Liu’s (pronounced Swing Leo) first professional win. She graduated from Wake Forest University in 2021 as an All-ACC Team member and a WGCA All American Scholar. Her $10,000 check is a significant start to her professional career, especially, as she explained in her post round interview, that she entered the tournament last minute having just learned about it from a friend by email. She was originally signed up for the LPGA Monday Qualifier as an alternate, but did not get in. “I really appreciate the opportunity here. I’ve been practicing at school and going through some swing changes. Today was my first bogie free round in a long time. It’s been just so fun and awesome out here and this course was tough. The greens were so fast.” In response to Liu’s shot on the 18th to save par and clinch her victory, head ECWPGT rules official Brian Decker said, “I’ve been officiating at every level for more than 30 years, and I have never, ever seen a shot like that on 18. These players are so talented. It’s been really fun to watch.”
Just launched in late December, the East Coast Women’s Professional Golf Tour is already in full swing, hosting its second tournament in as many weeks. 50 rising star professional pros, including top Symetra Tour players, recent college graduate and other professional players in pursuit of women’s golf highest level are playing for a $25,000 purse. Rio Pinar Country Club has been home to many LPGA and PGA Tour event, including the Florida Citrus Open in the mid-1970’s which feature the like of Jack Nicklaus, Hale Irwin, Arnold Palmer and Lee Trevino. The Club recently underwent a $3 million renovation to its golf course and club house and is excited to be hosting its first professional women’s tournament since doing so. This is the first professional women’s event since those LPGA days. Said Director of Golf Cole Hinson, “We’re doing a photo shoot with Siyun right now so we can get it hung on the wall here with the rest of these great champions. It was energizing to have these ladies here, and we can’t wait to have them back.”
The ECWPT if a mission-driven developmental professional tour creating more and better playing opportunities for women pursuing their LPGA dreams. Liu becomes the second straight first-time winner, following California’s Alyaa Abdul who won the ECWPGT Black Bear Women’s Championship a week ago. The ECWPGT is produced by Mediashare Consulting Group, Inc, which also produces the PXG Women’s Match Play Championship. For complete information about the ECWPGT and its schedule, please visit www.ecwpgt.com and follow on social media at 904.838.4962.