The USA won the Women’s World Amateur Team Championship for the Espirito Santo Trophy for the 14th time with a flourish.
Bolstered by nearly perfect scoring conditions and the performances of Kristen Gillman, who has won the 2016 and 2018 U.S. Women’s Amateur championship, and McCormack medal winner Jennifer Kupcho, the USA eased to a 10-stroke victory over Japan on the O’Meara Course for its first gold since 1998 in Chile.
“I am so proud of these girls,” said American captain Stasia Collins. “I am so proud of this team, and I am really happy for them and thrilled for the United States. They will always be known as the gold medal winners for the 2018 World Amateur Team Championships – no one can take that away from us.”
The USA, in winning its first medal since Argentina in 2010, posted a 29-under-par 551.
Gillman was the driving force of the day, making an eagle and four birdies against one bogey in her first nine holes to make the turn at 5- under. She added a birdie on the 13th en route to 6-under 67.
Kupcho fired a 4-under-69 to give the USA a 10-under fourth-round total of 136. She and Gillman and Lillia Vu were also members of the victorious USA Curtis Cup Team in June.
“We have the strong bond already from the beginning, especially yesterday when we were all struggling we all fought for each other,” said Kupcho, who won the NCAA Women’s individual title in 2018. “We all wanted to win for each other, and I think that was a big thing coming out of yesterday. And, I think that’s how we got our big lead coming into today.
Japan’s first appearance on the medal podium in 28 appearances was formulated by a pair of 3-under 70s from 18-year-olds Yuri Yoshida and Yuna Nishimura
Their final total was 19-under 561. Previously, its best finish was fourth in 1984.
Defending champion Republic of Korea stalled in its attempt to overtake the USA and captured the bronze medal, which is its fifth consecutive medal-winning performance. The Koreans, who had won three of the previous four WWATCs, withstood a late rally from fourth-place People’s Republic of China to finish at 18-under 562
Although there is no official recognition, Korea’s Ayean Cho was the low individual scorer at 17-under 273.