Skip to main content

Yokohama Tire LPGA Classic Preview & Pairings

Congratulations go out to Jenny Shin for winning the Volunteers of America Texas Shootout. Jenny shot a final round 4 under par 67, and came out on top by 2 strokes over a trio of players. It was the first victory on the LPGA tour for Shin.

The LPGA moves to the state of Alabama this week for the playing of the Yokohama Tire LPGA Classic. Many of you might recall last year's shocking finish, when Kris Tamulis shot a final round 65, to beat Yani Tseng by a single stroke. It was her first career victory since joining the tour in 2005.

Kris Tamulis holds up the winning trophy after her shocking victory.

This will be tournament #12 of 33 on this year's LPGA schedule.

Here are the key details:

Course:  RTJ Golf Trail, Capitol Hill, Senator Course
Location:  Prattville, Alabama
Defending Champion: Kris Tamulis
Winning Score:  71-68-67-65 = 271 (-17)

Final Field:  144 players
Par:  36/36 = 72
Yardage:  6,599
Purse:  $1,300,000

My strength of field rating is 55%. Although it is the second weakest field of the year, it is up considerably from last year when it had a rating of just 37%.
Twenty -nine of the top 50 players from the LPGA Priority List, and 23 of the top 50 players from this week's Rolex Rankings will be teeing it up. This week's field will include the #4 and #5 players in the world, Stacy Lewis and Brooke Henderson. Not in attendance this week include the following players: Lydia Ko, Inbee Park, Sei Young Kim, Lexi Thompson, In Gee Chun, Shanshan Feng, Suzann Pettersen, Ha Na Jang, Na Yeon Choi, Cristie Kerr, and this past week's winner, Jenny Shin.

Here are the pairings for round 1.

Here are the television times:
May 05 - GC 12:30 PM-2:30 PM ET 
May 06 - GC 12:30 PM-2:30 PM ET 
May 07 - GC 3:00 PM-5:00 PM ET
May 08 - GC 3:00 PM-5:00 PM ET

Here are my Pak Picker picks for this week's tournament:
1- Amy Yang
2- Brooke Henderson
3- Gerina Piller
4- Ariya Jutanugarn
5- Haru Nomura
6- Stacy Lewis
7- Hyo Joo Kim
8- Minjee Lee
9- Charley Hull
10- M.J. Hur
11- So Yeon Ryu
12- Candie Kung
My alternates this week are  Carlotta Ciganda, Cristie Kerr, and Anna Nordqvist.
My spot on picking last week was good for a top 3 finish. I am currently in 2nd place for the year among the 19 participants.

Other Tidbits:
Both Minjee Lee and Lexi Thompson saw their cut streaks come to an end this week at 22 straight.

Rolex Rankings Movers of the Week:
Gerina Piller makes the most important move this week, jumping from #20 to #17. She is now just 2 spots away from making the Olympic team. Jenny Shin rises from # 38 to #24, and M. J. Hur leaps from #71 to #53.

Race to the CME Globe: (1 Million Dollars)
Lydia Ko continues to lead with 2,119 points. She is followed by Ha Na Jang with 1,449, Haru Nomura with 1,442, Sei Young Kim with 1,254, and Brooke Henderson with 1,078.

Fight for Olympic Spots:
Cristie Kerr remains in the #16 position in the Rolex Rankings, she will have to move up one more spot to qualify. As mentioned above, Gerina Piller moves up to #17, just 2 spots short of qualifying for the team. Even more intriguing is the jockeying going on among the South Korean players. Amy Yang jumps past Ha Na Jang this week, knocking Ha Na out of both the Olympic and International Crown teams. Amy joins Inbee Park, Sei Young Kim, and In Gee Chun as players who would be on both those teams as of today. It would appear that the slipping So Yeon Ryu would need a quick victory to get back into those races.  

Who's Hot:
Gerina Piller who has still not gotten that first LPGA win, has finished 6th, 6th, 3rd, and 2nd in her last 4 tournaments. She has also not finished worse than 13th in her last 6.

Who's Not:
Julieta Granada has missed the cut in 6 of her 11 starts this year, with a best finish of 38th place. Sun Young Yoo has missed the cut in her last 3 starts.

Here are the Final Results:

1Ariya Jutanugarn-14F
2Amy Yang-13F
2Morgan Pressel-13F
2Stacy Lewis-13F
5Caroline Hedwall-12F
6Candie Kung-11F
6Hee Young Park-11F
6Minjee Lee-11F
6Ryann O'Toole-11F
10Brittany Lang-10F
10Gerina Piller-10F
10So Yeon Ryu-10F
13Carlota Ciganda-9F
13Pornanong Phatlum-9F
15Sarah Jane Smith-8F
15Jing Yan-8F
15Cydney Clanton-8F
15Laetitia Beck-8F
19Lindy Duncan-7F
19Anna Nordqvist-7F
19Jodi Ewart Shadoff-7F

Be sure to check back here daily for any LPGA news or updates.They will be posted here at the bottom of this blog.  Links to all Women's Tour scoreboards can be found at the top of this page.

Follow @tonyjesselli  on Twitter (Currently 1,462 followers)


  1. Brooke M's top 10 streak ended but is primed this week to move into the Rolex #4 slot. The T19 enabled her to gain points on Lewis and is now only .01 behind. Also best wishes to Stephanie Meadow do well this week and take a step towards the form she displayed at the 2014 USWO.

  2. The field strength is poor and it says a lot when past winner and American Lexi Thompson prefers to go to Japan and play in the World Ladies Championship Salonpas Cup this week despite all the points to be possibly gained here. Maybe this is where her game is at at the moment..


Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

LPGA Player Profile - Natalie Gulbis

With the LPGA taking a one week break before resuming its schedule in the state of Texas, I want to take this opportunity to do my fifth player profile.

The player I have chosen this time around, may very well be in the twilight of her career, but has been a crowd favorite for many years. I have chosen:


Born: 1/7/83 (34 years old)
Hometown: Sacramento Calif.
Resides: Lake, Las Vegas, Nev.
Rookie Year: 2002

Natalie has won once on the LPGA tour:

2007 Evian Masters

 Natalie has had many of her best finishes in Major Championships!

Best Finishes in Major Championships:

ANA Inspiration - Finished 3rd in 2006KPMG Women's PGA Championship - Finished 5th in 2005U.S. Women's Open - Finished 4th in 2005Ricoh British Open - Finished 9th in 2013The Evian Championship - Finished 52nd in 2013 (It was not a Major Championship when she won this event).

Career Stats:

318 career starts237 cuts made (74.5%)37 top tens (11.6%)Has $4,892,233 in career earnings through the 2016 season (57…

LPGA Reshuffles 2018 Priority List

The LPGA had its first reshuffle of its Priority List this week. While most of the players moved up or down a few insignificant spots, there were some very significant moves also.

The Priority List is what is used to fill the required amount of spots for any given tournament. Without me getting into the categories, which is potentially confusing, here is a brief explanation. Most full field events have a field of 144 players. Usually 140 of the players come from the Priority List ranking. Two players are Monday qualifiers, and 2 more are sponsor exemptions. So to keep it simple, if your Priority Rating is #150, you have to hope that 10 players decide not to play, or you are probably not getting into the field.

The following players made some of the biggest jumps in this week's reshuffle (and by getting into the top 100 become part of my weekly field rating):
Bronte Law - 108 to 86
Amy Olson - 112 to 88
Nasa Hataoka - 116 to 92
Caroline Inglis - 126 to 93
Hee Young Park - 106 to 94

Most Popular Photos of the Year - 2017

1/9/18 - Bonus pics added at bottom of this page!

As many of my readers know, my wife and I go to quite a few LPGA tournaments each year. Since 2010 we have gone to over 50 events, including two in Scotland (St. Andrews being our favorite), and the last 8 Canadian Opens.

I do all the writing on here (my wife who is a teacher, is my proofreader), while my wife Cindy does most of the picture taking. Neither of us are professional photographers, but once in a while we get lucky and capture a moment that is very popular with my viewers.

Below I have reposted the most popular photos of 2017. I based this on the number of website hits, and the number of comments each photo received. Some came as quite a surprise to me, as when they were taken I was not expecting such a reaction.


LPGA Qualifying Tournament 2018 Final Stage - The Q-Series

The final stage of the LPGA qualifying tournament, the Q-Series, will begin this week.
A field of 102 players will be teeing it up.

At the 2017 CME Group Tour Championship, the LPGA first announced that Q-Series will replace LPGA Qualifying School Final Stage, which was previously held annually in Daytona Beach, Florida. 

Instead of 90 holes like the old Final Stage, the new Q-Series will be 144 holes. Players will compete in two, four-day tournaments with cumulative scores over the eight rounds for a $150,000 purse, which will be distributed at the end of the eight rounds.

The LPGA will debut the new Q-Series at the historic Pinehurst Resort in Pinehurst, North Carolina, which has hosted several prestigious tournaments including the 2014 U.S. Women’s Open. 
The first week of the LPGA Q-Series presented by Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina will be played on the George and Tom Fazio-designed Pinehurst Course No. 6 from Oct. 24-27, while the Q-Series will conclude on the Rees Jon…

U.S. Women's Open Preview, Pairings, and More

Before I get started on this week's tournament, let me give a big congratulations to Minjee Lee for winning the LPGA Volvik Championship. Minjee's final round -4 under par 68, was good enough to win by one stroke over runner-up In Kyung Kim.

This week the LPGA travels to the state of Alabama for the playing of the U.S. Women's Open Conducted by the USGA. This is the second Major Championship of the 2018 season.

Sung Hyun Park will be trying to successfully defend the title she won last year at Trump National Golf Club by two strokes over Hye Jin Choi.

This will be tournament #14 of 33 on this year's LPGA schedule. It is also the 2nd of five Major Championships to be held this year.

Course:  Shoal Creek
Location:  Shoal Creek, Alabama
Defending Champion:  Sung Hyun Park
Winning Score:  73-70-67-67 = 277 (-11)

Final Field:  156 players
Cut: Top 60 and ties
Par:  36/36 = 72
Yardage:  6,732
Purse:  $5,000,000

My strength of field rating is a mighty 87% (down from 91% last year). The re…

118th U.S. Women's Amateur Championship Preview

The LPGA is taking a one week break this week before resuming their schedule in Indianapolis.

I would like to take this time to preview a very important USGA event that is taking place this week.

The 118th U.S. Women's Amateur Championship

Many of my readers may remember last year's championship when University of Texas senior Sophia Schubert, 21, of Oak Ridge, Tenn., became the first player over the age of 19 to win the championship in nine years with her 6-and-5 victory over Stanford sophomore Albane Valenzuela, of Switzerland, at San Diego Country Club in Chula Vista, Calif.

Here are the Key Details:
Championship Venue:  Golf Club of Tennessee
Location:  Kingston Springs, Tenn.
Architect:  Tom Fazio
Par:  71
Yardage: 6,275

Dates of Championship:  August 6-12
Field:  156 players
Eligibility: Any female amateur whose handicap index does not exceed 5.4
Defending Champion: Sophia Schubert
Winning Margin: 6 and 5 over runner-up Albane Valenzuela

Championship Field
A starting field o…

Breaking News: Lexi Thompson Withdraws From Ricoh Women's British Open

Lexi Thompson announced today via Instagram that she has withdrawn from the Ricoh Women's British Open. She released the following statement:

Hi everyone, I wanted to let you know that I am officially withdrawing from the 2018 Ricoh Women's British Open.  It is extremely difficult for me not to play in this prestigious Major, but I realized recently that I need to take some time to work on myself. The events of the past year and a half (on and off the golf course) have taken a tremendous toll on me both mentally and emotionally. I have not truly felt like myself for quite some time. I am therefore taking this time to recharge my mental batteries, and to focus on myself away from the game of professional golf.  Thank all so much for your continued support. I hope to see everyone soon as I plan to defend my title at the 2018 Indy Women in Tech Championship. Lexi
It has been a tough past couple of years for Lexi. She lost the 2017 ANA Inspiration in a playoff when she was given a 4 s…