Skip to main content

Solheim Cup Preview - Can Team USA Successfully Defend Their Title?

The LPGA takes a break from its normal tournament schedule for the playing of the 2017 Solheim Cup.

Image result for 2017 solheim cup

History:
The Solheim Cup is a biennial golf tournament for professional women golfers contested by players from the United States and Europe. It is named after the Norwegian-American golf club manufacturer Karsten Solheim, who was a driving force behind its creation.

The inaugural cup was held in 1990, and the event was staged in even numbered years until 2002, alternating years with the Ryder Cup (the equivalent men's event between the USA & Europe). Because of the attacks of September 11th 2001, forcing the postponement of the Ryder Cup, the Solheim Cup was switched to odd numbered years in 2003.

Qualifying for Entry:  (USA)
1- A player must finish in the top 8 on the Solheim Cup points list.
2- The top 2 players in the Rolex Rankings that have not already qualified.
3- Two captain's picks.

Points are accumulated the following way:
(From the first event after the previous Solheim Cup match in 2015 through the end of the 2016 season)
Winner - 40 points, 2nd - 20 points, 3rd - 18 points, 4th - 17 points, all the way down to 20th - 2 points.
(The 2017 season tournaments, leading up to the Solheim match)
Winner - 60 points, 2nd - 30 points, 3rd - 28.5 points, 4th - 27 points, 5th - 25.5 points, all the way down to a 20th place finish worth 3 points.
The reason for the increased points for the last part of the term is to give an advantage to the players who are hot going into the match. 
Points are doubled for major championships.


Qualifying for Entry:  (Europe)
1- A player must finish in the top 4 on the LET  Solheim points list.
2- The top 4 players from the Rolex Rankings that have not already qualified.
3- Four captain's picks.

The event is played over three days. Since 2002, they play 28 matches - eight foursomes, eight four balls, and twelve singles matches.

Of the previous 14 matches, the USA has won nine, and Europe has won five. Team USA will be trying to defend the title they won in 2015, when they made the biggest comeback in Solheim Cup history! Trailing 10 points to 6 going into the singles matches on Sunday (Team Europe just needed 14 points to successfully defend the title), team USA took 8 1/2 of the 12 points available that day to go on to a 14 1/2 to 13 1/2 victory.

Image result for usa wins 2015 solheim cup
Team USA will be trying to defend the title they won in 2015, when they made the biggest comeback in Solheim Cup history.

Returning as captain this year for Team USA will be Juli Inkster. Annika Sorenstam will be the captain for Team Europe.

Here are the key details:

Course:  Des Moines Golf and Country Club
Location:  West Des Moines, Iowa
Defending Champion:  Team USA
Winning Score:  14 1/2 to 13 1/2

Final Field:  24 players
Par: 72
Yardage:  6,894
Purse:  This one is for pride!

Here are the teams:  (Solheim records in parenthesis)

Team USA:
Lexi Thompson  (3-2-2)
Stacy Lewis  (4-7-1)
Gerina Piller  (3-2-2)
Cristie Kerr  (15-14-5)
Danielle Kang  (Solheim rookie)
Michelle Wie  (7-7-1)
Brittany Lang  (5-6-3)
Brittany Lincicome (5-11-2)
Lizette Salas  (1-3-2)
Austin Ernst  (Solheim rookie)
Angel Yin (Solheim & LPGA rookie)
Paula Creamer (14-8-5)
     Totals  = 57-60-23 


Team Europe:
Georgia Hall   (Solheim rookie)
Florentyna Parker  (Solheim Rookie)
Mel Reid  (4-3-1)
Jodi Ewart Shadoff  (2-1-0)
Carlota Ciganda  (4-1-2)
Suzann Pettersen  (16-11-6)
Charley Hull  (6-2-0)
Karine Icher  (5-4-1)
Anna Nordqvist  (8-7-1)
Caroline Masson  (2-3-2)
Emily Pedersen (Solheim & LPGA rookie)
Madelene Sagstrom - (Solheim & LPGA rookie)
    Totals = 47-32-13

My Prediction:
Predicting this one is always very difficult. Last year I predicted team USA to win 14 1/2 to 13 1/2, and that was exactly how it turned out. This year team Europe will have revenge as a motive, but team USA will have the home field advantage. I think team USA appears stronger and has more depth. But the players on the 2017 team Europe squad have won 59.5% of their previous matches compared to just 48.7% for team USA.

 Look for team USA to hold their own the first 2 days in couples play (where they always struggle), and have the edge on Sunday. This time I dont think it will be as close. Team USA will win by a score of 15 1/2 to 12 1/2.

Here are the television times:
August 18 - GC - 9:00 AM-2:00 PM ET
August 18 - GC - 4:00 PM-7:00PM ET
August 19 - GC - 8:00 AM-4:00 PM ET 
August 19 - NBC - 4:00 PM-6:00 PM ET 
August 20 - GC - 12:00 PM-4:00 PM ET 
August 20 - NBC - 4:00 PM-6:00 PM ET 

Other Tidbits:

This Week's Trivia Question: (for those who missed it earlier)

When and where was the first Solheim Cup held?

For the answer to this week's trivia question press here.

UPDATE #1 -  Suzann Pettersen has withdrawn and has been replaced by Catriona Matthew who has a 15-10-8 Solheim record).

UPDATE #2 - Team USA has a 5 1/2 to 2 1/2 lead after day 1

UPDATE #3 - Team USA has a 10 1/2 to 5 1/2 lead after day 2

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.



   (Currently 1,542 followers)
                                     





Comments

  1. As always, will be interesting

    ReplyDelete
  2. Has there ever been so few top-10 competitors in the Solheim Cup and has there ever been an American team member as low in the Rolex Rankings as Paula Creamer at 110th?

    Sports medic

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I am thinking that when Ryann O'Toole was picked in 2013 she was lower than 110.

      Delete
    2. Actually I was reminded that O'Toole was picked in 2011.

      Delete
  3. Could be like '91 Ryder Cup due to global intensity, though different Dye design; O'Toole was picked in '11 when Lexi was too young

    ReplyDelete

Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

ISPS Handa Women's Australian Open Preview & Pairings

After a one week break, the LPGA travels to the continent of Australia for the ISPS Women's Australian Open. This tournament has a history of very close finishes. Who could forget the 2012 finish, where Jessica Korda won a 6 player playoff? The following year Jiyai Shin and Yani Tseng battled it out down the stretch, with Jiyai coming out on top by 2 strokes. Last year nine players finished within 3 strokes of each other, with Karrie Webb taking home the trophy.




This will be tournament #3 of 33 official tournaments on the 2015 LPGA schedule.

Here are the key details:

Course:  The Royal Melbourne Golf Club
Location:  Melbourne, Austrailia
Defending Champion:  Karrie Webb
Winning Score:  71-69-68-68 = 276 (-12)

Final Field:  156 players
Par: 38/35 = 73
Yardage:  6,479
Purse:  $1,200,000

My strength of field rating is a weak 48%. Just 25 of the top 50 players on the LPGA Priority List, and 11 of the top 25 players from the Rolex Rankings, will be teeing it up. Among the missing this w…

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:

NATALIE GULBIS


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
Mariajo…

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.

#18
#17
#16
#15
#14
#13
#12
#11
#10
#9

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…

LPGA Player Profile: Azahara Munoz

It has been a while since I did my last LPGA player profile.

The player I have chosen this week is the very popular:


Azahara Munoz



Born:  11/19/87 (30 years old)
Hometown:  San Pedro del Alcantara, Spain
Resides:  Jupiter, Fla.
Rookie Year: 2010
2017 Earnings:  $286,417 (63rd)

She has won once on the LPGA tour:

2012 Sybase Match Play Championship
Best finishes in Major Championships: ANA Inspiration - Finished 7th in 2014KPMG Women's PGA Championship - Finished 4th in 2014U.S. Women's Open - Finished 19th in 2010Ricoh Women's British Open - Finished 12th in 2014The Evian Championship - Finished 19th in 2013


Career Stats: 202 career starts175 cuts made (86.6%)38 top tens (18.8%)Has $4,894,331 in career earnings. (61st on the all time LPGA career money list)


Other career highlights: Posted a career high 10 top ten finishes in 2014First Spaniard to win the Louise Suggs Rolex Rookie of the Year award in 2010Turned professional in 2009 and qualified for the LPGA tour in her first atte…