Ko holds off Kang to win at Boca Rio on LPGA

Ko holds off Kang to win at Boca Rio on LPGA

BOCA RATON, Fla. — Lydia Ko pulled ahead with a birdie on the 15th hole and matched scores with Danielle Kang the rest of the way, closing with a 3-under 69 for a 1-shot victory on a chilly Sunday in the Gainbridge LPGA at Boca Rio.

Ko won for the second straight season after enduring a three-year slump and picked up the 17th victory of her LPGA Tour career.

Kang, who closed with a 68, was trying to win back-to-back for the second time in three years. She won the season-opening Tournament of Champions a week ago in Orlando.

U.S. Women’s Open champion Yuka Saso, now playing under the Japanese flag, birdied the last two holes for a 67 and finished 2 shots behind.

Ko finished at 14-under 274.

Nelly Korda closed with a 70 and tied for 20th, a result that is expected to drop her from No. 1 in the women’s world ranking. Jin Young Ko, who skipped both Florida events to stay home in South Korea, would return to No. 1.

The LPGA Tour now takes a one-week break before wrapping up its Florida swing at the LPGA Drive On Championship.

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