UNRELENTING until the end, Keanu Jahns closed out with a five-under-par 67 on Friday to win the 18th WWWExpress-DHL Amateur Open by seven shots over Rupert Zaragosa at Canlubang’s tree-lined North layout in Laguna.
The long-hitting Fil-German bounced back from his only bogey of the day by gunning down his sixth and last birdie on the 17th before holing out with a routine par to complete the rout and bag his first major win on local soil with a 281 total, seven-under-par for the event presented by the MVP Sports Foundation.
Zaragosa cracked par for the second straight day but couldn’t gain ground on the lanky Jahns. He shot a 70 to rescue a level 288 for the tournament also backed by Pancake House, Nike, Golf Depot, and Pacsports.
Dottie Ardina, the pro-bound 19-year-old, shared the winner’s stage with Jahns after an equally dominant performance to rule the women’s side.
Ardina, after a 60 and a 70 in the first two days, slowed down with an even 72 but still won by a whopping eight shots over Princess Superal with a 54-hole 212 total in the event making up a leg of the PLDT Group Amateur Golf Tour.
Superal also had a 72 while Pauline Del Rosario fired a 75 to be another two shots off. Chanelle Avaricio closed out with a 76 and 13-year-old Abegail Arevalo, the newest recruit of the ICTSI program, finished fifth at 228 after a 78.
Jik-Jik Abdon, the former national champion who started the day just two shots off Jahns, ballooned to a 78 and lost third spot via a countrback to Japanese teenager Gen Nagai, who fired a 74. Both finished with 294 tallies.
The win was the first in the country for the 17-year-old Jahns, who made heads turn less than two weeks while playing for Alabang in the PAL Interclub.
Justin Quiban fired a 76 for 295 while Park Min Ung and Yoon Sung Hwan of Korea, Edsel Tan, Jonar Austria, Norman dela Pena and lefty Andres Saldana rounded up the top 10 finishers.
Lloyd Jefferson Go, the Cebu Country Club standout who held the first-round lead, skied to an 85 and finished 29 strokes off the pace.