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University of Florida senior Sierra Brooks advanced to the LPGA’s Q-Series finale in a big way Thursday while juggling homework.
She closed with a 4-under 68 at Plantation Golf & Country Club in Venice, Fla., to share medalist honors with Germany’s Olivia Cowan (69) at the second stage of Q-School.
Brooks wasn’t going to take much time to celebrate. She has a history exam Friday.
“I actually brought notecards on the course to study,” Brooks said. “Since I was by myself a little bit out there, it was nice to at least try to study a little bit, when I could.
“It was definitely a fun week, and I’m happy with my golf game, the way everything turned out. The goal for every tournament is to go in with a mindset to win, but controlling what I can, and just playing my game. I’m happy with where that is, and I’m ready to ride that momentum into next week.”
Brooks was among seven amateurs advancing to the start of Q-Series next week, where they will be playing to win LPGA tour cards. Thirty-eight players will move on to Pinehurst, N.C., for the two-week finale.
Stanford seniors Albane Valenzuela (T-8) and Andrea Lee (T-10), USC junior Jennifer Chang (T-19) and Florida State sophomore Frida Kinhult (T-24) also put themselves in positions where they may have some decisions to make before the spring collegiate season.
Bianca Pagdanganan, who helped Arizona win the NCAA championship in 2018, made the biggest move of the final round, putting up a 64 to vault into tie for eighth, jumping 35 spots on the final day. She finished up her senior year last spring but remains an amateur.
China’s Mohan Du finished third but won’t be advancing to Q-Series. Neither will Yae Eun Hong, an amateur from South Korea who finished fourth. They haven’t reached the 18-year-old age requirement to advance but are assured of Symetra Tour status next year.
Yealimi Noh (65) and Haley Moore (69) rallied to earn spots at Q-Series.
Noh turned pro as a 17-year-old earlier this year and made a couple runs at winning LPGA titles as a non-member, playing her way into events through Monday qualifying. She’s now 18. She tied for second at the Cambia Portland Classic and tied for sixth at the Thornberry Classic this summer.
Moore teamed with Pangdanganan to help Arizona win that NCAA title in ‘18, and turned pro in the summer.
Lucy Li, the 17-year-old from Redwood Shores, Calif., entered the final round tied for 11th but struggled to a 77 to finish tied for 72nd. She reached her goal, though. She won Symetra Tour status.
England’s Meghan McLaren joined Cowan, Esther Henseleit, Celine Herbin and Joanna Klatten among LET pros who advanced.