The unlikeliest part of Ruoning Yin’s major victory? Her caddie

Ruoning Yin gained the KPMG Girls’s PGA in epic style — and she or he did so with a caddie she’d solely identified for a number of weeks.

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Jon Lehman may hardly wipe the smile off his face.

Moments earlier, his boss, Ruoning Yin, sunk a 10-foot birdie putt to develop into golf’s latest main champion on the KPMG Women’s PGA. Whereas Yin is in scoring finalizing her outcomes, Lehman stands subsequent to her bag within the parking zone, reporters surrounding him.

“She’s fairly particular,” Lehman mentioned. “I’m simply so excited for her.”

Lehman, 39, speaks at a quantity hardly above a whisper. His demeanor is an element surfer, half hippie, with flowing locks popping out the again of his hat to finish the look. If you need a relaxing presence on the bag, Lehman checks all of the packing containers.

Within the high-stress setting of major-championship golf, maintaining your feelings in test is completely important. Tournaments are sometimes gained not simply by who executes probably the most photographs, however who handles the stress the most effective.

On Sunday at Baltusrol, that was Yin.

“Her ball-striking, demeanor — every thing is simply thus far forward of all people else,” Lehman mentioned. “She’s fairly particular. She’s clever past her years.”

The best way Lehman speaks about Yin, you’d assume the 2 have been partnered up for years. He is aware of her recreation to a T, and so they have a rapport on the course that’s obvious to even probably the most novice eye. In fact, although, the 2 have solely been collectively for simply two tournaments.

One month in the past, Lehman was caddying on the Korn Ferry Tour for Noah Goodwin. However after a few years schlepping on the PGA Tour’s prime growth tour, the veteran bagman determined it was time for a change.

ruoning yin fist pumps

As others wilt, Ruoning Yin seizes KPMG Women’s PGA title with clutch final round


Zephyr Melton

“I used to be searching for one thing new,” Lehman mentioned. “So I despatched a number of messages to some buddies that caddie out right here telling them I used to be searching for one thing. [Yin] had simply let go of her outdated caddie at the moment, inside 20 minutes of me sending that message. It was loopy. Simply excellent timing.”

Lehman and Yin linked up for the primary time on the ShopRite Classic, ending in a tie for fifteenth, and with the Girls’s PGA as the subsequent match, they started getting ready to deal with Baltusrol. With Yin taking the week earlier than the occasion off, Lehman headed to New Jersey to scout the course.

“It actually helped out,” Lehman mentioned. “Type of gave me an higher hand on all people else.”

Yin admitted that she usually reads her personal putts whereas in competitors, however early within the week, Lehman talked about he had fairly a really feel for Baltusrol’s difficult greens.

“He know the course very nicely, particularly on the greens,” Yin mentioned. “He simply know each a part of the inexperienced. We began I believe our first match at ShopRite. I simply learn my greens on my own. This week he simply informed me he’s actually good at studying. I used to be like, ‘Okay, let’s see.’ Yeah, he’s superb.”

That green-reading potential was essential coming down the stretch on Sunday. After not having the ability to gap many putts by means of the primary 12 holes, Yin lastly started to search out the underside of the cup over the past six holes. She went three below on the closing stretch within the last spherical — together with a 10-footer on 18 — to clinch the title.

“I simply talked to my caddie, like, possibly left edge,” Yin mentioned. “I simply [hit] a really clutch putt.”

As Lehman completed talking with the reporters assembled round him, he had a fast apart with a caddie strolling previous. He had only one query: “Am I going to get to maintain the flag from the 18th inexperienced?” The guy caddie assured him that they’d see to it that the flag made it into his possession.

If Lehman sticks round on Yin’s bag, he’ll probably have many extra flags to retrieve sooner or later.

Zephyr Melton Editor

Zephyr Melton is an assistant editor for the place he spends his days running a blog, producing and enhancing. Previous to becoming a member of the group at GOLF, he attended the College of Texas adopted by stops with the Texas Golf Affiliation, Workforce USA, the Inexperienced Bay Packers and the PGA Tour. He assists on all issues instruction and covers newbie and girls’s golf. He could be reached at

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Printed : 2023-06-27 21:59:28

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