Marina Alex came into the week nervous returning to New Jersey for the U.S. Women’s Open at Trump National Golf Club, Bedminster. She leaves after four rounds as the low American player.
I'm really happy with how I handled myself,” Alex said. “It was tough going into it, I knew there was going to be a ton of fans and just a ton of pressure to play well and I handled it the best that I could. I'm pleased.”
The 26-year-old ended her fourth U.S. Women’s Open with a 2-under 70 to finish at 4-under for the week and in a tie for 11th. Alex did so with the pressure of being the only player from New Jersey in the field and in front of her whole family and fans from the Garden State.
I'm really glad that the State of New Jersey and the community found it and interesting coming out to watch me and watching women's golf, being out here,” Alex said. “There's a lot to work still to improve, mainly just handling myself under pressure and being able to play how I play, you know, the first two rounds, Saturday and Sunday and continuing to keep that up and try and handle the circumstances, you know better, each time.”
Her bogey-free 70 on Sunday included two birdies on holes No. 4 and 12. On Saturday, Alex was five-over on her round through her first six holes before rebounding to shoot a 1-over 73.
“This is great experience for me,” Alex said. “It's just more experience for me being in contention and being under a lot of pressure and just figuring out ways to handle it, ways to just improve on dealing with the environment and how to hit quality shots when under a lot of pressure.”
Alex, a former Junior Tour Player who played out of North Jersey Country Club, grew up in Wayne, N.J. She’s been in four previous U.S. Women’s Open’s, missing the cut two times and finishing 20th in 2015.
This is the first U.S. Women’s Open in New Jersey since Plainfield Country Club last hosted it in 1987. The Championship has been held in New Jersey seven times.