Saso, 19, turned the primary Filipino participant to win a golf main and introduced herself as a brand new drive within the sport together with her first main title.
The Filipino teenager pumped her fist and smiled after nailing a 10-foot birdie putt for the win after overcoming the early adversity on a picture-perfect day on the Lake Course.
“I used to be truly upset,” Saso mentioned concerning the two double bogeys in her first three holes, which appeared to doom her possibilities.
“My caddie talked to me and mentioned there are nonetheless many holes to go and to maintain doing what I have been doing the previous few days,” she mentioned. “And to belief the method.”
All week Saso loved the vocal help of followers from close by Daly Metropolis, which is house to a big Filipino inhabitants.
Saso, who earlier within the match revealed she tried to emulate four-time males’s main champion Rory McIlroy’s swing, acquired encouragement from the Northern Irishman on social media on Sunday, which she mentioned gave her a lift.
“Rory mentioned, ‘Get that trophy,’ and I did. So thanks, Rory,” she mentioned.
At 19 years, 11 months and 17 days, Saso matched South Korea’s Park Inbee to the day because the youngest champion on the ladies’s sport’s oldest main.
Saso needed to survive a late cost by Hataoka, who was searching for to change into the most recent Japanese main winner after Hideki Matsuyama triumphed on the Masters earlier this yr.
After beginning the day six strokes off the lead, Hataoka stormed from behind with three birdies on her final six holes however then hit pars on the three playoff holes and will solely watch on as Saso sank the profitable shot.
Heartbreak for Thompson
The playoff got here after American Lexi Thompson, who led by 4 strokes on the flip, suffered a heartbreaking collapse on the again 9.
Thompson, 26, had her elusive second main title in sight however misplaced her accuracy off the tee on the again 9 and missed essential putts on 17 in addition to one on 18 that may have seen her into the playoff.
The favored American, who was taking part in in her fifteenth US Ladies’s Open, might solely handle a disappointing four-over 75 on Sunday.
Thompson, who on Saturday mentioned she had been engaged on taking a extra optimistic mindset to the sport, mentioned it was onerous to smile however added that it was “an incredible week.”
“I performed not so properly at the moment with just a few of the bogeys coming in on the again 9, however the followers have been unbelievable, listening to the chants, it provides me a motive to play,” she mentioned.
“I am going to take at the moment and I am going to study from it.”
The 76th version of the US Ladies’s Open marked the primary time that it has been performed on the hilly and difficult Olympic Membership, the oceanside course that has hosted 5 males’s US Opens.
Subsequent yr’s match shall be performed at Pine Needles Golf Membership in North Carolina earlier than it returns to California at Pebble Seashore in 2023.