Tuesday, March 31, 2015

ANA Inspiration Preview & Pairings (The year's first Major Championship)

Congratulations go out to Cristie Kerr for winning the Kia Classic. Cristie shot a final round 65 to finish 2 strokes better than runner up Mirim Lee.

Cristie Kerr became the first American to ever win the Kia Classic


The LPGA moves to Rancho Mirage, California this week for the year's first major championship.
This will be the first year that this tournament (formerly the Kraft Nabisco Championship) will be sponsored by All Nippon Airways.

Mission Hills Country Club. The home of this year's first major championship.


Last year's championship was one we will all remember for a very long time, as Lexi Thompson and Michelle Wie went into the final round tied for the lead. Lexi would shoot a final round 68 which was 3 strokes better than Wie's 71. Stacy Lewis finished in third place.


Lexi holds up the trophy she received for winning her first major championship


This will be tournament #8 of 32 on this year's LPGA schedule, and the first of 5 major championships.

Here are the key details:

Course:  Mission Hills Country Club: Dinah Shore Tournament Course
Location:  Rancho Mirage, California
Defending Champion:  Lexi Thompson
Winning Score:  73-64-69-68 = 274 (-14)

**Final Field: 115 players
Par:  36/36 = 72
Yardage: 6,769yards
Purse:  $2,500,000

My strength of field rating is a very strong 87%. With the limited field of just 115 players it lacks some depth, but the inclusion of players such as, In Gee Chun (#24 in RR), Teresa Lu (#29), Charley Hull (#33), and Yoon-Kyung Heo (#38), more than makes up for it.

Here are the first round pairings:

Here are the television times:
Apr 2 - GC 12:00 PM-3:00 PM ET
Apr 2 - GC 6:00 PM-9:00 PM ET
Apr 3 - GC 12:00 PM-3:00 PM ET
Apr 3 - GC 6:00 PM-9:00 PM ET
Apr 4 - GC 5:00 PM-9:00 PM ET
Apr 5 - GC 5:00 PM-9:00 PM ET

Here are my picks for this week's tournament:
1- Lexi Thompson
2- Lydia Ko
3- Hyo Joo Kim
4- Stacy Lewis
5- Inbee Park
6- Shanshan Feng
7- Jessica Korda
8- Anna Nordqvist
9- Ilhee Lee
10- Mirim Lee
11- Ha Na Jang
12- Cristie Kerr
My awful picking last week was only good enough for 11th place. I am currently in 10th place among the 24 participants.

Other Tidbits:
There was an abrupt end to many LPGA cut streaks. Mina Haragae (16), Jenny Shin (15), Hee Young Park (15), and Marina Alex (13), all saw their streaks come to an end.

Lydia Ko has now shot under par in her last 28 rounds. Annika Sorenstam holds the all time record of 29. Lydia will have the chance to break that record this week in a major championship.

Hyo Joo Kim has never missed a cut in any of the 14 LPGA tournaments she has played in. Think that is impressive? Lydia Ko has never missed an LPGA cut. She has played in 48. 

Rolex Movers of the Week:
Two players entered the top ten this week. Lexi Thompson jumps up from #11 to #9, while Cristie Kerr jumps up 9 spots to the #10 position. Amy Yang and Karrie Webb fall out of the top 10. Further down the chart, Alison Lee catapults from #281 to #115.
Race to the CME Globe: (1 million dollars)
Lydia Ko continues to lead with 1,480 points. She is followed by Amy Yang (1,022), and Stacy Lewis (1,001).

Who's Hot:
Lydia Ko has not finished outside the top seven in any of the six tournaments she has played this year.

Who's Not:
Christine Song, who missed the cut last week by 20 strokes managed to top that this week. Her score of +29 missed the cut by 30 strokes. She has now missed 13 consecutive cuts.

On Other Tours:
On the Symetra Tour, Sue Kim won the Florida Natural Charity Classic by 2 strokes over sisters Brooke and Brittany Henderson.

On the JLPGA, Ritsuko Ryu defeated Bo-Mee Lee in a playoff to win the AXA Ladies Golf Tournament.

On the LET, Gwlayds Nocera defeated Melissa Reid (and 2 others), by 2 strokes to win the Lalla Meyer Cup.

Be sure to check back daily for any updates. They will be posted here at the bottom of this blog.

Here are the final results:

T1Brittany Lincicome-972687069279$375,000
T1Stacy Lewis-972696870279$231,449
3Morgan Pressel-867727170280$167,900
T4Carlota Ciganda-774716868281$106,653
T4Anna Nordqvist-771726969281$106,653
T4Sei Young Kim-772656975281$106,653
7Lexi Thompson-672697170282$71,595
T8Suzann Pettersen-576687267283$56,812
T8Mi Hyang Lee-574687071283$56,812
T8Shanshan Feng-571707072283$56,812
T11Angela Stanford-472697667284$37,606
T11Karine Icher-474727068284$37,606
T11Christina Kim-473707269284$37,606
T11Hyo Joo Kim-471747069284$37,606
T11Catriona Matthew-471697470284$37,606
T11Inbee Park-474697071284$37,606
T11Mirim Lee-471707271284$37,606
T11Moriya Jutanugarn-471707073284$37,606
T11Jenny Shin-471697173284$37,606





For complete scoreboard see link on top of this page.

  (currently 1,255 followers)


Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Kia Classic Preview & Pairings

Congratulations go out to Hyo Joo Kim this week for winning the JTBC LPGA Founders Cup. Stacy Lewis finished in second place, 3 strokes back. It was the third week in a row that Stacy has finished in the top 3. The three stroke margin of victory was the largest on the LPGA tour this season.

Aviara Golf Club home of the Kia Classic

The LPGA tour moves to the state of California this week for the playing of the Kia Classic.
Many of you may remember last year's finish when Anna Nordqvist defeated Lizette Salas by one stroke. Lexi Thompson finished 2 strokes back, followed by Chella Choi a stroke further back.

2014 defending champion Anna Nordqvist

This will be tournament #7 of 32 on this year's LPGA schedule.

Here are the key details:

Course:  Aviara Golf Club
Location: Carlsbad, California
Defending Champion: Anna Nordqvist
Winning Score:  73-68-67-67 = 275 (-13)

Final Field: 144 players
Par: 36/36 = 72
Yardage:  6,593 yards
Purse:  $1,700,000

My strength of field rating is a very high 88.5%, making this the strongest field of the year by a big margin. Ninety-seven of the top 98 players on the LPGA Priority List, and 42 of the top 50 players from the Rolex Rankings will be teeing it up. The only top player missing this week from the Priority List is Azahara Munoz, who just had hand surgery.

Here are the first round pairings.

Here are the television times:
Mar 26 - GC 6:00 PM-9:00 PM ET
Mar 27 - GC 6:00 PM-9:00 PM ET
Mar 28 - GC 6:00 PM-9:00 PM ET
Mar 29 - GC 6:00 PM-9:00 PM ET

Here are my Pak Picker picks for this week's tournament:
1- Hyo Joo Kim
2- Lydia Ko
3- Stacy Lewis
4- Inbee Park
5- Sei Young Kim
6- Anna Nordqvist
7- Na Yeon Choi
8- Jessica Korda
9- Lexi Thompson
10- Ariya Jutanugarn
11- Lizette Salas
12- Amy Yang
I am currently in 8th place in the overall standings among the 24 participants.

Other Tidbits:
Pernilla Lindberg (17), Cristina Kim (14), and Candie Kung, all saw their cut streaks come to an end.

Rolex Rankings Movers of the Week:
Hyo Joo Kim vaults up from #8 to #4, while Pornanong Phatlum rises from #28 to #23.

Race to the CME Globe:  (1 million dollars)
Lydia Ko leads with 1,290 points. She is followed by Amy Yang (1,022), and Stacy Lewis (945).

Who's Hot:
It sure seems like every player from South Korea! They have won 5 of the first  6 tournaments.

Who's Not:
Christina Song's score of +18, missed the cut by 20 strokes. M.J. Hur has not finished better than 58th in her last 4 starts, which include 2 missed cuts. Sakura Yokomine has yet to make a cut as an LPGA member.

Be sure to check back daily for any updates. They will be posted here at the end of this blog.

Update #1 - Becky Morgan and Jane Rah are the Monday Qualifiers.
Update #2 - Lizette Salas has dropped out of field list. She has been replaced with Karlin Beck.

Here are the final scores:
1Cristie Kerr-20F
2Mirim Lee-18F
3Lydia Ko-17F
4Alison Lee-16F
5Inbee Park-15F
6Hyo Joo Kim-14F
6Ha-Na Jang-14F
8Moriya Jutanugarn-13F
8Sakura Yokomine-13F
10Ilhee Lee-12F
10Anna Nordqvist-12F
10Lexi Thompson-12F
10Se Ri Pak-12F
10Paula Creamer-12F

For full leaderboard see link on top of this page.
  (currently 1,250 followers)


Monday, March 16, 2015

LPGA Founders Cup Preview & Pairings




After a one week break, the LPGA resumes its schedule this week with the playing of the LPGA Founders Cup. This will be the first of 3 consecutive tournaments that will be played on the west coast of the United States, and will include the year's first major championship.

Many of you may remember last year's exciting finish, when Karrie Webb came out on top by one stroke over five players. Those players finishing 1 stroke back included: Stacy Lewis, Lydia Ko, Amy Yang, Azahara Munoz, and Mirim Lee. I look for another close one this year.

The first five tournaments of this year have resulted in five different winners. Will this be the week that someone gets to hold their second trophy of 2015?

Karrie Webb has won this tournament in both 2011 & 2014

This will be tournament # 6 of 32 on this year's LPGA schedule.

Here are the key details:

Course:  Wildfire Golf Club at JW Marriot Phoenix Desert Ridge Resort & Spa
Location:  Phoenix, Arizona
Defending Champion:  Karrie Webb
Winning Score:  66-71-69-63 = 269 (-19)

Final Field: 132 players
Par:  72
Yardage:  6,583
Purse:  $1,500,000

My strength of field rating is a mediocre 74.5 (down from last year's 84.0). Forty-one of the top 50 players from the LPGA Priority List, and 18 of the top 25 players from the Rolex Rankings will be teeing it up. Players missing from this week's event include: Inbee Park, Shanshan Feng, So Yeon Ryu, Azahara Munoz, Lexi Thompson, Catriona Matthew, Lee-Anne Pace, and Caroline Hedwall.

Here are the pairings for the first round:.

Here are the television times:
Mar 19 - GC 6:00 PM-9:00 PM ET
Mar 20 - GC 6:00 PM-8:00 PM ET
Mar 21 - GC 7:00 PM-9:00 PM ET
Mar 22 - GC 7:00 PM-9:00 PM ET

Here are my Pak Picker picks for this week's tournament:
1- Stacy Lewis
2- Lydia Ko
3- Ariya Jutanugarn
4- Mirim Lee
5- Jessica Korda
6- Karrie Webb
7- Amy Yang
8- Hyo Joo Kim
9- Minjee Lee
10- Chella Choi
11- Jaye Marie Green
12- Anna Nordqvist
I am currently in 6th place in the overall standings among the 24 participants.

Other Tidbits:
With the Airbus LPGA Classic officially removed from the LPGA schedule, there will be 32 official events this year. That is the same as 2014.

On Other Tours:
The L.E.T. leaderboard looked more like the LPGA this past weekend when So Yeon Ryu was the winner of the World Ladies Championship. Inbee Park finished just one stroke back. Suzann Pettersen finished 3 strokes behind the winner.

On the Suncoast Ladies Tour, Brooke Henderson won last week's tournament by 9 strokes. Her sister Brittany finished second.

Rolex Movers of the Week:
So Yeon Ryu moves up from #8 to #6. On the downside, former #1 Ai Miyazato falls 7 spots to the #133 position.

Be sure to check back daily for any updates. They will appear at the bottom of this page.

Update #1:
Giulia Molinaro and Kathleen Ekey are the Monday  qualifiers.

Update #2 - The first round finally got underway after a 3 hour rain delay.

Here are the final standings 3:

1Hyo Joo Kim-21F
2Stacy Lewis-18F
3Ilhee Lee-16F
3Pornanong Phatlum-16F
3Mi Hyang Lee-16F
6Anna Nordqvist-15F
6Austin Ernst-15F
6Sei Young Kim-15F
6Na Yeon Choi-15F
6Lydia Ko-15F
11Sandra Gal-14F
11Lizette Salas-14F
13Jane Park-13F
13Amy Yang-13F
13Ha-Na Jang-13F
13Kim Kaufman-13F

For complete scoreboard see link on top of this page





 (Currently 1,245 followers)