Porvasnik wins memorable match play event

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The PXG Women’s Match Play Championship turned into the Jessica Porvasnik show, as she won both the stroke play and match play tournaments over the two-week showcase.

“I’m just trying to keep building on the momentum,” Porvasnik said.

She had to fight through adversity to win the match play final Nov. 4 but wound up eventually defeating Julianne Alvarez after two playoff holes.

It was a torrid start for Alvarez at the Slammer and Squire Golf Course at the World Golf Village, as she started the championship match on fire and hitting one pinpoint shot after another.

“I just started pretty hot,” Alvarez said. I felt really comfortable out there. I’m known for my ball striking.”

That comfortability was on display when she drained a 60-foot putt on the second hole.

“You can be a lot more aggressive in match play,” Alvarez said. “It really allows you to be creative with your shots.”

Meanwhile, Porvasnik struggled with errant tee shots in the early part of the round en route to Alvarez was up four shots through five holes of play.

However, Porvasnik continued to chip away and just focus on hitting one shot at a time.

That philosophy worked as she was able to mount a furious comeback and close the gap and the two were tied for much of the back nine.

“I knew if I continued giving myself some opportunities, putts would fall,” Porvasnik said.

Alvarez sank a huge putt on the 17th hole and followed it up with a double fist pump as it put her up by one stroke with only one hole left to play.

But her putt would not fall on the 18th hole and instead rimmed out and the competition went to a playoff.

As the sun went down and the temperature dropped, Porvasnik clinched the victory with a nice approach shot on the 13th green and took advantage of it with a beautifully paced putt that cozied up right next to the hole for an easy tap-in.

Alvarez had a chance to force another hole on a putt prior to Porvasnik’s attempt, but it once again just missed the cup.

Porvasnik celebrated the win by hugging her father on the 13th green and then sharing an embrace with Alvarez, who she had just shared the golf course with for 20 holes.

On the bag for Alvarez during the championship round was Sarah Rhee, who had competed during the two-week event and the two were teammates at the University of Washington.

According to tournament promoter Mark Berman, the 20 holes they played meant that the two had played 188 holes of golf in a two-week span between the match play and stroke events.

“I’ve never played in a tournament like this before,” Alvarez said. “I’m not going to lie, I’m pretty tired right now.”

The meaning behind the championship was to promote women’s golf and part of that included offering a purse that was reflective of that.

Porvasnik earned $8,000 with the match play victory and a combined $13,000 during the two weeks, while Alvarez brought home $5,000 for placing second.

After playing so much golf of late, Porvasnik is looking forward to the opportunity to take a break from competitions.

She encourages girls interested in playing the game to be patient because it is not going to always be easy, but the memories it creates is worth it.

“It’s a tough game, but it just makes it even sweeter when you finally reach the top and win a big event like this,” Porvasnik said.

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