[PHOTO: Sarah Stier]

Yuka Saso had a US Women’s Open title to her credit, having won the 2021 edition at Olympic Club about a month short of her 20th birthday. As such, she knew the two-shot deficit she faced heading into the final round at Lancaster Country Club in Pennsylvania was well within reach. She rebounded from a four-putt double-bogey with four birdies on the final nine to become the youngest player to win two US Women’s Opens.

That four-putt came on the sixth hole, but from there on our Saso was money. At the treacherous 149-metre, par-3 12th, Saso dropped her tee shot 10-and-a-half feet from the hole and made the putt. On the next hole, Saso clipped a nifty wedge from 67 metres to a few feet on the par-5 13th to take the lead. Minjee Lee then watched as her tee shot on 12 hit the green but rolled back in the water – the same hole where Nelly Korda took 10 in the opening round.

On the par-4 15th, Saso pured a 5-iron from 173 metres that caught the slope and rolled to within six feet. The ensuing putt dropped, stretching the lead to two, and when Saso drove the green with her tee shot at the par-4 16th for a fourth birdie in five holes, it gave her the cushion she needed to offset a three-putt bogey at 17 and secure her second open win.

That 5-iron was a Callaway Apex CB, part of a split set of irons where the 4 and 5-irons are the CB and the 6-iron through 9-iron are the company’s 2021 model.

It was off the tee and on the green, however, where Saso won the US Women’s Open. She ranked third in driving distance at 280.7 yards (256.7 metres) and third in strokes gained off the tee as well, gaining 1.18 shots on the field with her 9-degree Callaway Paradym Ai Smoke Triple Diamond driver. And despite the four-putt stumble, Saso ranked first in strokes gained/putting, grabbing 3.4 shots on the field.

Not to mention grabbing the Harton S. Semple trophy given to the champion in the process.

What Yuka Saso had in the bag at the 2024 US Women’s Open:

Ball: Callaway Chrome Tour X

Driver: Callaway Paradym Ai Smoke Triple Diamond, 9 degrees

3-wood: Callaway Paradym Ai Smoke Max, 16.5 degrees

5-wood: Callaway Apex UW, 18 degrees

Irons (4-5): Callaway Apex CB; (6-9): Callaway Apex MB 21

Wedges: Callaway Jaws Raw (46, 52, 56, 60 degrees)

Putter: Odyssey Ai One Milled 3T