Texas sophomore Kaitlyn Papp secured a spot in Saturday’s final round at the Augusta National Golf Club.
“I’m so excited. My main goal coming here was to make the cut,” she said. “At the turn I saw the leaderboard, and I knew I was in a good position to make the cut, so I just tried to focus on doing the best I can to get closer to the lead.”
Papp’s 3-under-par 69 lifted her into a tie for third after Thursday’s second round of the Augusta National Women’s Amateur at Champions Retreat Golf Club.
She enters the final round two shots behind leader Jennifer Kupcho and one shot behind Maria Fassi.
After shooting an even-par 72 in the first round, Papp started the second day on the back nine. Her early bogey on the 11th hole was one of only two hiccups on the day. She birdied holes 15 and 16, thanks to two long putts.
With birdies on the 18 and third holes, she reached 3 under for the day. A bogey on the sixth hole was erased with a birdie on the par-3 eighth. Papp’s 69 was the second-lowest round in the tournament, just behind Kupcho’s first-round 68.
“Overall, I felt like I continued my good ball striking from yesterday. I think I dropped a few more putts today, which was really the main difference, and I just tried to improve on the mistakes from yesterday,” Papp said. “I made a couple long putts in my round today. Fifteen and 16, I drilled a couple long ones about 25-30 feet off the fringe. I feel like that really got my round going and continued the momentum on the back nine.”
This won’t be Papp’s first experience at Augusta National.
“About a month ago, me and my two teammates from UT made a practice trip out here. We played Champions Retreat and then we got on Augusta National,” she said. “It’s really amazing. In addition to that, my instructor, Chuck Cook, sat down with a couple of us girls and shared his knowledge about the course and where and where not to hit the ball.”
Agathe Laisne, the Texas sophomore from Paris, finished at 3 over in an 11-way tie for 21st place, and she made the cut in a playoff for the last 10 spots in the final round.
Laisne entered the second round at even par and birdied the 10th hole to begin the round. She then bogeyed the 14th, 16th and first holes, pushing her to 2 over. She birdied holes three and seven before bogeying the par-3 eighth to post a 75.
Longhorn Emilee Hoffman missed the cut after a second-round 74, finishing the tournament at 5 over. She and the others who missed out will participate in the practice round at Augusta National on Friday.