The final day of play at the 2023 LPGA and Epson Tour Qualifying Tournament Stage II has officially come to a close. Of the 188 players that teed it up on Tuesday, 41 players will have the opportunity to head to LPGA Q-Series in Mobile, Ala. this November. The no-cut format made it a marathon for the field, with each player never truly being out of contention. Of the 41 that earned a spot in LPGA Q-Series, 11 players opened Stage II with an over-par round and battled their way back inside the top 40 and ties cutoff for LPGA Q-Series.
Ingrid Lindblad led the way for the last three rounds at Stage II after posting a 5-under 67 in the final round to end her week as medalist at 18-under, but she will not be heading to LPGA Q-Series later this year. Amateurs are not permitted to compete at LPGA Q-Series, and Lindblad is a graduate student at Louisiana State University with plans to continue her collegiate career for one more year. The World Amateur Golf Ranking No. 1 is in no rush to turn professional and will enjoy her last year at LSU after an impressive showing at Stage II.
“It’s my first real qualifying playing this week, so I talked a little bit to our coach for the Swedish team, and he was like, don't treat it as qualifying. Just treat it as a tournament,” said Lindblad. “At the beginning of the year, I'm like I am probably just going to go through the whole Q-Series and like peace out, but I was talking to my coaches, and I really like it at LSU. Like our coaches are awesome. This year, we have a really good team, so I just want to give it a chance to get another SEC and maybe a national championship.”
Epson Tour member Pinyada Kuvanun is heading to LPGA Q-Series after her third-place finish at Stage II. Kuvanun closed out her week with a 3-under 69 to get into double digits on the week at 11-under. She will be making her second appearance at LPGA Q-Series, where she missed the cut by one shot in 2022. The Thailand native had a solid 2023 campaign on the Epson Tour, finishing 49th in the Race for the Card to earn her spot in Stage II.
“There was a little bit of pressure yesterday. I feel better, more relaxed today. We played in the third last group today, and then I'm just trying to play my game like every day,” said Kuvanun. “I think I've been hitting the fairway a lot, so from the stat that I saw, I've been like hitting 80% off the fairways throughout the year, so I think that's giving me more opportunity to play to the green. I need to improve with my putting more so I can shoot lower scores.”
The round of the day belonged to Kaitlin Milligan, who just finished up her second year on the Epson Tour. The 2023 season was not the one that Milligan hoped for as she finished 96th on the Official Money List, but she is now six rounds away from earning a spot on the LPGA Tour for 2024. Milligan ended Stage II with a 7-under, bogey-free 65 to finish in a tie for fourth. The Oklahoma native played the last 12 holes of the day in 6-under, and she now has a newfound confidence heading into LPGA Q-Series.
“It was good. I really just tried to keep it fairly simple. Just trying to hit a fairway, hit a green, really be where my feet are, and try not to overthink the score or what it was going to be or what I was at or anything like that,” said Milligan. “I think I did a really good job of doing that, and then add in some good ball striking and made a few putts. It's definitely been a grind like all year. I feel like this is kind of a weight lifted off my shoulders. Hopefully, I don't have to grind too much more, just relax and play.”