Maria Fassi may not be walking away with a trophy at the Kroger Queen City Championship presented by P&G, but the 24-year-old is certainly holding her head high. After starting Sunday one stroke back of 54-hole leader Ally Ewing, Fassi was able to card a final-round 71 to take solo third, her career-best individual finish on the LPGA Tour. The 2019 Tour rookie got off to a less than stellar start, with two bogeys on Nos. 3 and 7. But three straight birdies on Nos. 10-12 helped her back up the leaderboard en route to a total score of -16.
“Just very, very happy. I could say I fell short, you know, I could look at all the negatives, but I'm extremely proud of how we fought this week, how well we played,” said Fassi. “Being in contention is a place where I want to be a lot more, so it's definitely a huge incentive. At the same time, just a huge pat on the back for all the work we been doing.”
Fassi, who started the week No. 97 in the Race to the CME Globe Points standings, jumped 30 spots with the result in Cincinnati to No. 67, putting the Mexican in a solid spot as she looks to secure her status for 2023 with seven events remaining on the 2022 schedule before the CME Group Tour Championship. Fassi has only once played her way into the Tour’s season finale, back in 2020 when the criteria allowed 72 exempt players, and finished T61. Now with some pressure off her shoulders, she’ll be turning her focus to a couple of new goals heading into the AmazingCre Portland Classic and the Walmart NW Arkansas Championship on home turf.
“I've been with my back against the ropes all freaking year, so it's pretty cool to at least be able to take a breather and be in a better place than I've been all year,” said Fassi. “I love the next few tournaments that we have coming up. They're great golf courses. Of course, we have Arkansas in a couple weeks, and just very happy to be going back home. I just want to continue to build off what this week was and hopefully end the year playing at Tiburon.”