Rianne Malixi came through with a spectacular chip-in birdie on the fourth playoff hole to beat Singapore's Suanne Loh Wednesday and lead the Philippines to a bronze medal in women’s golf team match play at the Heron Lake Golf course in Vietnam.
Malixi made it up after muffing a five-foot downhill birdie putt on No. 1, the third playoff hole.
Both players overshot the par-5 No. 9, but the ICTSI-backed Malixi, 15, hit a perfect chip shot, the ball landing before the green then rolling from left to right before dropping to the cup.
Undaunted, Loh also hit a solid chip-shot, the ball heading straight to the hole only to swerve to the left, sending Malixi and Team Philippines into jubilation.
That chip saved the week for the Filipino golfers, who could finish no higher than fourth in women’s individual play, courtesy of Lois Kaye Go, with Malixi ending up joint ninth behind eighth placer and ICTSI teammate Mafy Singson; and 15th in the men’s side through Jed Dy.
The men’s squad, which included Jet Hernandez, Gab Manotoc and Kristoffer Arevalo, also absorbed a 0-3 loss from Indonesia in the men’s team quarterfinal match play.
Earlier, Malixi upstaged individual silver medalist Aloysa Mabutas, 3 and 2, to force a playoff for the bronze after Go lost, 4 and 3, to Loh.
Malixi took the first two holes against Mabutas, surrendered the next but held sway all throughout their tight duel, going 2-up again by taking No. 15.
A solid tee-shot on the par-3 16th set up another birdie chance from six feet and the rising Filipina star delivered, draining in a downhill putt to clinch the victory.
She pumped her fist then gave Mabutas the customary hug before celebrating with her team.
In contrast, Go struggled against Loh.
The member of the bronze medal team in the 2019 SEA Games in Tarlac never recovered after trailing on No. 3, giving up another hole on the sixth. She took No. 8 but yielded the 10th and gave up three straight holes from No. 13.