A double-bogey on her opening hole took Leona Maguire out of contention for the title at the Dana Open, but she recovered well to secure her third consecutive top-10 finish on the LPGA Tour.
The Cavan woman started the day three shots off leader Lucy Li, but a six on the par-four first instantly dropped her off the pace, and by the time she got moving again she was already too far back.
But her response was superb, Maguire birdieing three holes in a row to finish her front nine and then adding two more on her way back to the clubhouse – with one birdie – for a two-under 69.
That saw her finish in a share of 10th at 13-under-par, her third consecutive top-10 finish on the LPGA Tour, and she remains 13th in the Race to CME Globe standings as she looks to finish the season strongly heading into the play-offs.
Maguire would eventually end the day five shots off winner Gaby Lopez, the Mexican producing an incredible final round performance to leapfrog the rest of the contenders, birdieing her final three holes in a bogey-free eight-under 63 – the low round of the day – to set what would be the winning score at 18-under.
She would still have to wait for the leaders to finish, but American Megan Khang fell one shot short at 17-under after a 64, with Germany’s Caroline Masson posting a 68 to claim third at 16-under.
Overnight leader Li would have to settle for a share of fourth with Sarah Schmelzel and Ruoning Yin at 15-under on a day where she never got out of first gear, two birdies and a bogey leading to a 70.
“I didn’t really bring an attitude,” said 28-year-old Lopez, the World No.67. “It was more of creating a quiet space before hitting the golf ball and committing to that before every single ball.
“It’s so easy to get ahead of yourself, especially coming down the stretch, but if you keep it in the present, that’s when magic happens.”