Tuesday, December 2, 2014

LPGA Qualifying School: The Final Stage


The Final Stage of the LPGA Qualifying Tournament will be held Wednesday December 3 through Sunday December 7 at LPGA International - Jones & Hills Courses.

There will be 154 players in the field competing to earn LPGA membership for the 2015 season.


Update - Monday 12/8/14

Karlin Beck made a 75 foot chip shot on the 5th playoff hole of the day and the 11th in total, dating back to Sunday night, to earn the final Category 12 LPGA Card. Casey Grice was eliminated on the 10th playoff hole, and Stephanie Meadow was eliminated by Beck's chip shot on the 11th playoff hole.

Both Meadow and Grice have earned Category 17 LPGA Cards. Grice was the first round leader. Meadow, who finished third in the 2014 U.S. Open, figures to get a number of sponsor exemptions. She will have ample opportunities to improve her status during the LPGA reshuffles. 

Update - Sunday 12/7/14

Believe it or not, they have finished 5 rounds and 90 holes and it is still not over!
When 90 holes were completed there were 7 players tied for the 18th spot. Only 3 players of those 7 can get a fully exempt category 12 playing card, so they went to a 3 hole playoff. After that playoff only one player was eliminated, so on and on they went. After a few more playoff holes, 2 more players got in, leaving 3 players fighting for one spot. Of course it got dark. They will continue tomorrow morning.

Here is the list of the 19 players that have earned full time playing privileges in 2015:
1- Allison Lee -10
1- Mingee Lee -10
3- Ariya Jutanugarn - 9
3- Maria Hernandez - 9
5- Ryann O'Toole -8
6- Simin Feng - 7
6- Ha Na Jang -7 (Incredibly, she shot an 80 today and still got in)
9- Kelly Shon - 6
9- Nanette Hill -6
11- Cheyenne Woods - -5
11- Therese Koelbaek -5
11- Perrine Delacour -5
11- So Be Kim -5
11- Sakura Yokomine -5
11- Sofia Popov -5
11- Ju Young Park -5
18- Laetitea Beck -4 (Got in via playoff)
18- Garrett Philips -4 (Got in via playoff)

Here are the 3 players that will be fighting it out for the last spot tomorrow:
18- Karlin Beck -4
18- Stephanie Meadow -4
18- Casey Grice -4

Here are the players that have earned a category 17 LPGA card. They will have limited opportunities to get into playing fields next year. The players at the top of this list should get a few opportunities to get into the playing fields and will have to make the most of them to get reshuffled into a better position (like Kim Kaufman did in 2014). The players at the end of this list will have little or no opportunities to play this year on the LPGA Tour, and will probably be playing mostly Symetra Tour events.

21- Loser of the above playoff
22- Loser of the above playoff
23- Julie Yang (a) - Lost playoff
24- Jacqui Concolino - Lost playoff
25- Nontaya Srisawang -3
25- Daniella Iacobelli -3
25- Louise Stahle -3
28- ***Charley Hull -2
28- Natalie Sheary -2
28- Jeong Eun Lee -2
28- Rebecca Lee Bentham -2
28- Jean Reynolds -2
28- Lindy Duncan -2
34- Jing Yan (a) -1
35- Paolo Morena -Even
35- Victoria Elizabeth -Even
35- Celine Herbin -Even
35- Emma de Groot -Even
35- Jennifer Gleason -Even
35- Sophie Giquel -Even
35- Elizabeth Nagel -Even
35- Caroline Westrup -Even
43- Katy Harris +1
43- Marta Sanz Barrio +1
43- Giulia Molinaro +1

*** Charley Hull is the exception to my above explanation of category 17 playing opportunities.
Because of her "bigger than life" persona, and her status on the Ladies European Tour, Charley will get into quite a few tournaments this year. In addition to the normal amount of events she would get into because of her placement, expect her to get 6 more sponsor exemptions. In addition she has already qualified for several events based on her 2014 play.
 With all these opportunities, expect her to reshuffle into full time status very quickly.

Other notables that failed to earn there cards today, in addition to the players I listed yesterday.

52- Veronica Felibert +3
52- Kathleen Ekey +3
58- Emily Talley +4
64- Maude-Aimee Leblanc +5
64- Birdie Kim +5

Check back tomorrow for the playoff result. 

Update - Saturday 12/6/14 (Completion of round 4 of 5)

Ha Na Jang shot a 68 today to take a 3 stroke lead after the fourth round. She finished at 15 under par. Maria Hernandez is in second place at -12.

Other Notable scores:
Mingee Lee -11 (3rd place)
Alison Lee, Ju Young Park -10 (4th place)
Sei Young Kim, Sakura Yokomine - (9th place)
Stephanie Meadow - 7 (14th place)
Ryann O'Toole -6 (17th)
Jean Reynolds -4 (25th)
Cheyenne Woods, Rebecca Lee Bentham -3 (32nd place)
Emily Talley -2 (38th place)
Kathleen Ekey -1 (44th place)
Victoria Elizabeth -Even (54th place)
Veronica Felibert +1 (58th place)
Charley Hull, Maude-Aimee Leblanc +2 (68th place)

The following players were among the bigger named players that missed the 72 hole cut and will not be receiving a 2015 LPGA playing card.

Lori Kane +8
Sylvia Cavalleri +9
Valentine Derrey, Vicky Hurst +10
Chie Arimura +13
Madison Pressel, CindyLaCrosse +15


Madison Pressel (R) will be trying to join her sister Morgan on the LPGA Tour

Players who finish in the top 20 will earn category 12 Priority List membership. This means that they will get to play in all full field LPGA tournaments. Players finishing 21-45 will get category 17 membership, which amounts to conditional playing privileges. The players in category 17 usually do not get into many LPGA events and will probably spend most of the 2015 season playing in Symetra Tour events. Only 3 category 17 players managed to retain their cards this year (Kim Kaufman, Joanna Klatten, and Lee Anne Pace) as a result of their LPGA accomplishments.

There will be a cut on Saturday after 72 holes are completed. The top 70 and ties will advance to the final round on Sunday.

There are just four ways that a player earned entry into the field this week:
  • By finishing in the top 80 of qualifying School phase 2.
  • By finishing 11-30 on the 2014 Symetra Tour money list.
  • If they are currently ranked in the top 40 of the Rolex Women's World Golf Rankings.
  • Had 2014 LPGA Tour membership.
This will be one of the strongest fields in history, as it will include 3 players who are ranked in the top 40 in the world, and 3 players who have posted a top 10 finish on the LPGA in 2014.

Three Players in the Top 40 of the Rolex Rankings:
  1. Ha Na Jang - Currently at #25 in the Rolex Rankings, She finished in a tie for third at the 2014 Evian Championship.
  2. Charley Hull - Currently #37 in the Rolex Rankings, she finished tied for third at the Airbus LPGA Classic, and tied for 7th at the Kraft Nabisco Championship.
  3. Sei Young Kim - Currently #43 in the Rolex Rankings, she played 5 LPGA events in 2014, but failed to finish higher than 40th place.
Sakura Yokomine (44), Minjee Lee (82), Ariya Jutanugarn (91), and Valentine Derrey (100) are also ranked in the top 100 in the world rankings.

The following players who are in the field, have previously won on the LPGA Tour.
  1. Lori Kane - Lori won  four times during the 2000 LPGA season.
  2. Birdie Kim - She won the 2005 U.S. Women's Open Championship.
  3. Sylvia Cavalleri - She won the 2007 Corona Championship
Other Notable Players in the Field:
  1. Stephanie Meadow - She finished third at the 2014 U.S. Women's Open Championship, and is trying to become the first LPGA member from Northern Ireland.
  2. Cheyenne Woods - She was a winner this year on the Ladies Europeon Tour. She failed in her attempt to get her card last year when she missed the 72 hole cut.
  3. Alison Lee - She was the WGCA Freshman of the year at UCLA. She also had the lowest scoring average (71.02) in the country. She finished 4th at stage one, and solo 2nd at stage 2.
Three Players Trying to Join Their Sisters on LPGA Tour:
  1. Madison Pressel - Will be trying to join her sister Morgan.
  2. Ariya Jutanugarn - Hoping to join sister Moriya on the LPGA Tour.
  3. Ju Young Park - She will be attempting to play beside her sister (Hee Young).
Past medalists (finishing in first place) of LPGA Final Stage include: Paula Creamer, Ai Miyazato and Stacy Lewis. Jaye Marie Green was the 2013 winner, with a record breaking score of -25.

Other Facts & Figures:

There will be fifty-one 2014 LPGA Tour members in the field. They include players such as Ryann O'Toole, Kathleen, Ekey, Vicky Hurst, Cindy LaCrosse, and Veronica Felibert, who are trying to regain their playing cards.

There will be 54 Symetra Tour players in the field.

Their will be 32 countries represented this week including the United States.

The state of Florida has 16 players teeing it up.

There will be 12 amateurs in the field.

Lori Kane's 99 top ten finishes on the LPGA tour is the most (by far) of any 2014 Q-School participant. 

Here are the pairings for the first round.

Be sure to check back here for any updates. I will post results when rounds are completed.


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3 comments:

  1. Some more trivia, Brittany Henderson older sister of world #1 amature Brook Henderson will be trying to qualify.

    ReplyDelete
  2. I'm surprised to see Sakura Yokomine trying to get a US tour card. It would be fun to watch her crazy swing on the US LPGA.

    ReplyDelete