Dottie Ardina hangs tough but settles for second

Dottie Ardina hangs tough but settles for second

Dottie Ardina

MANILA, Philippines — Dottie Ardina battled back from four down with a late birdie binge but ran out of holes and settled for second with a 68 in the Self Regional Healthcare Foundation Women’s Health Classic ruled by American Vicky Hurst at The Links at Stoney Point Golf Club in Greenwood, South Carolina Sunday.

Tied with Hurst and Swede Jenny Haglund after 54 holes, Ardina fell behind despite a 35 start as Hurst sizzled with a birdie and eagle to take charge, going three-up over the Filipina ace with another birdie on No. 10.

But after a bogey on No. 11, Ardina struck back with a birdie on the next and pulled to within one on a birdie-bogey swing on No. 13. The duo traded pars in the next four holes and Hurst matched Ardina’s closing birdie to clinch a one-stroke victory on a 279 after a 67.

Ardina, who wound up with a 280 after a second straight four-under card, actually had a chance to force a playoff after reaching the par-5 18th in two.

“My caddy told me that I made it in two after I hit my shot. But he didn’t tell me that before which is good, or I would have hit it somewhere else,” said Ardina. “I gave myself a good chance but Vicky really did good today.”

Haglund failed to keep pace with Hurst and Ardina, carding a 70 to drop to joint third at 282 with compatriot Linnea Strom, who rallied with the tournament-best 64, Elizabeth Szokol of the US (66) and Germany’s Isi Gabsa (67).

It was a sorry setback for Ardina, who had hoped to nail the elusive win on the tour with a superb 68 in the third that forced a three-way tie for the lead. But her second runner-up effort should further boost her confidence heading to the Symetra Classic in North Carolina starting Thursday.