Wayne native Marina Alex after tying for 11th at the U.S. Women’s Open.
Greg Mattura/

BEDMINSTER – Marina Alex didn’t just represent New Jersey – she carried the banner for the United States, and in front of the President.

The Wayne native delivered a pressure-packed, bogey-free final round on Sunday at the 72nd U.S. Women’s Open to climb into a tie for 11th – the best finish by an American.

Alex’s 2-under-par 70, in front of family, friends and President Donald Trump, marked her third time breaking par on the Old Course at Trump National Golf Club.

“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,” Alex said after shooting 4-under 284. “And I handled it the best I could, so I’m pleased.”

Alex, 26, a two-time New Jersey high school champion at Wayne Hills High School, heard yells of “Jersey” on Sunday “on every hole.” Fans from around the country could have yelled “U-S-A” during a round in which she had 16 pars and two birdies.

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“I’m really glad that the state of New Jersey and the community found an interest in coming out to watch me, and watching women’s golf, and being out here, so I’m really happy,” Alex said.

By the time she reached the par-5 18th hole, Alex had more than three dozen family members, friends, even a couple of her former teachers, in her gallery. She labeled Sunday’s performance “a great round,” and signed autographs as she came off the course.