Y.E. Yang Falls Short At U.S. Open

by Jay Yim

No one was going to catch Rory McIlroy, not after the 22-year-old Irish golf phenom — hailed as golf’s next superstar — shot a sizzling 16 strokes below par to capture the U.S. Open yesterday.

Y.E. Yang came close, however.

Yang had the best performance of 11 Korean and Korean American golfers who participated in the major golf tournament at the Congressional Country Club in Bethesda, Md. The 39-year-old finished the tournament with a six-under-278 and had started the final day in second place, trailing McIlroy by eight strokes thanks in part to his strong short game during the first two days of the tournament.

However just as he had on the tournament’s third day, Yang again struggled with his short game on the final round Sunday. He wound up recording just three birdies before stalling on the back nine, where he recorded three bogeys and finished the day shooting an even-par 71. That allowed Jason Day of Australia to sneak past him for second place finish. Thus, Yang had to settle for a four-way-tie for third place finish with prize money of $364,231.

“Overall, there could be so many regrets, the two bogeys in the last few holes,” Yang said through an interpreter. “I had a lot of opportunities where I could have made birdies. But at the same time I’ve missed the last two cuts in the last two U.S. Opens, and this is my third U.S. Open. So coming in third, I mean, there [are] a lot more positives than there are negatives.”

Seung Yul Noh, Johoon Kim and Young-Tae Kim finished in a nine-way tie for 30th place by shooting two-over-286 during the tournament. Sangmoon Bae finished in a three-way-tie for 42nd-place by shooting 4-over-273.

Missing the cut for the tournament, were KJ Choi, Kevin Na, David Chung and Dae-hyun Kim.

Photo via Dong-A-Ilbo.