Ruoning Yin wins the 2023 KPMG Women's PGA Championship
Ruoning Yin wins the 2023 KPMG Women's PGA Championship. (Photo by Christopher Shannon - JSN)

Yin Wins: Ruoning Yin Claims 2023 KPMG Women's PGA Championship Crown

Springfield, N.J. - In just her fourth major championship start, Ruoning Yin became just the second Chinese golfer to win a major title as she used a birdie on 18 to clinch the 2023 KPMG Women's PGA Championship at Baltusrol Golf Club.

"I think I was on 18 tee, I just looked at a leaderboard, and I saw, I have a one-shot lead, Yin said about the action leading up to her winning putt.  "And when I walked down to the fairway and I saw Yuka (Saso) made a birdie there, I know I have to make birdie on 18 to win."

Her birdie on Baltusrol's finishing hole was just a microcosm of Yin's day.  Yin hit 18 of 18 greens in regulation and really found her putting stroke on the back nine.  Additionally, Yin was able to stay out of Baltusrol's thick rough, accurately placing her tee shots on her way to finding 12 of 14 fairways on Sunday.

Yin's accurate ball striking led to a spotless scorecard. Her scorecard included no bogies and four birdies for a final round 4-under-par 67 and an 8-under for the tournament.

"It means a lot, but it still feels unreal right now," Yin said about her win.  "Before today, I didn't even think about it. After nine holes when we were at the clubhouse, I started thinking about, oh, maybe I have a chance to win this championship."

Yuka Saso - 2023 KPMG Women's PGA Championship - Championship Sunday

Yuka Saso (Photo by David Venezia - JSN)

Yuka Saso finished a stroke behind Yin and, after birding 18 herself, gave Yin all she could handle.

Saso finished her final round with a 5-under 66 to finish the tournament at -7.  Saso's scorecard was not quite as spotless as Yin's, with one bogie, but she made up for the one blemish with six birdies.

"It was a little different because after nine we had a break for about almost two hours," Saso said of being in contention for a major championship.  "But just trying to enjoy every moment and just keep doing what I've been doing.  I think just let the result come after.  But I think trying to enjoy every moment in a major championship I take very seriously."

Five golfers finished the 2023 edition of the KPMG Women's PGA Championship tied for third.  Carlota Ciganda, Anna Nordqvist, Megan Khang, Stephanie Meadow, and Yin's fellow countrywoman, Xiyu Lin, each finished at 6-under for the tournament.

With it's Garden State tour complete, the LPGA next heads to the famed Pebble Beach Golf Links in Pebble Beach, California for the U.S. Women's Open from July 6-9.

Of Note

  • Play was suspended for an hour and 52 minutes due to storms around Springfield.
  • In just her second overall start as a pro, and in her first professional start in a major, Rose Zhang finished three off the pace, at -5 for the tournament, good enough for a tie for eighth.
Christopher Shannon