|Jessica Shepley of Canada tees off on the 6th hole during the final round of the LPGA Canadian Women's Open golf tournament in Coquitlam, British Columbia August 26, 2012. (REUTERS)
COQUITLAM, B.C. - Jessica Shepley saved her best for last at the 2012 CN Canadian Women's Open.
She drained a 40-foot putt in front of a Canadian crowd to put an exclamation point on what she described as "a fun weekend" at the Vancouver Golf Club.
"I can't believe it went in," said Shepley of the closing stroke that slid right to left and caused the 29-year-old Oakville, Ont., native to let loose an ear-to-ear smile and issue a couple of high-fives. "What a way to finish.
"That's a cool way to end it."
Just as cool was accepting the event's top Canadian award — the Sandra Post medal — from Sandra Post herself.
Post was Shepley's first golf coach from the time she was an early teen up until her college years. Shepley then hired high-profile swing guru Sean Foley.
"For sure, it was extra special having Sandra present the award," said Shepley of Post, who was the first Canadian to play on the LPGA Tour, winning eight times. "She's a good friend of mine and a mentor."
It's the second straight CN Canadian Women's Open that Shepley has carded the best score among Canuck golfers to win the award.
Shepley shot a 1-over 73 in Sunday's final round for a 2-over total of 290, good enough for a tie for 41st overall and US$9,477. Last year, she finished in a tie for 45th with a 1-under 287 for $9,092 at the Hillsdale Golf & Country Club in MIrabel, Que.
"The crowds have been so wonderful to me all weekend," said Shepley, the only Canadian of 15 to make the cut after Friday's second round. "I love playing here and in front of my family and friends.
"It's always good when you play well in your home country."
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