Tuesday, October 3, 2017

LPGA Player Profile: Sandra Gal (and much more)

Let me start off by giving a big congratulations to Brooke Henderson for winning the MCKAYSON New Zealand Women's Open. Brooke took the lead from Belen Mozo early in round four and never looked back. She shot a final round 3 under par 69 , to finish 271 (-17), which was 5 strokes better than runner-up Jing Yan.

For the 20 year old Henderson, who is in her second full year on tour, it was her fifth LPGA victory (which includes one Major Championship) and second this year.

With the LPGA having an unexpected week off (the Alisport LPGA tournament was cancelled) it gives some time to do another LPGA player profile.

The player I have chosen this week is Sandra Gal.

These are just a couple of many magazine covers that featured Sandra Gal

Born:  May 9, 1985
Hometown:  Cologne, Germany
Resides:  Orlando, Fla.
Rookie Year:  2008

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Sandra was a member of both the 2011and 2015 Solheim Cup Teams.

Sandra has one victory on the LPGA Tour.

  • 2011 Kia Classic

Image result for Sandra gal wins kia classic trophy
Sandra won the 2011 Kia Classic.

Best finishes in major championships:

  • ANA Inspiration - 15th in 2011
  • KPMG Women's PGA Championship - 12th in 2015
  • U.S. Women's Open - 3rd in 2012
  • Ricoh Women's British Open - 25th in 2013
  • The Evian Championship - 19th in 2013

Sandra with yours truly at the Sybase Matchplay Championship.

Career Stats (through the 2017 Indy Women in Tech)
  • 240 career starts
  • 188 cuts made (78.3%)
  • 24 top tens (10%)
  • Has earned $3,741,216 in prize money (75th on the all-time LPGA career money list)
Other Career Highlights:
  • Represented Germany in the 2016 Rio Olympics, finishing 25th
  • A Two time member of the European Solheim Cup Team (2011, 2015) with a 2-3-2 overall record
  • In 2015 shot a career low 64 (for the fifth time) in the first round of the Manulife Classic
  • Won four tournaments as a member of the University of Florida Women's golf team, where she was a first team All-American in 2007
Did you know?
Sandra's hobbies outside of golf include painting and singing. She even brings painting supplies with her on the road.

Links to Previous Player profiles:
Natalie Gulbis

Other Tidbits:
It was an important week for several players as this was the last full field event of the year. Players who were in danger of losing their playing privileges had this one last chance to earn some money and get into the top 100 on the money list and get to play in full field events in 2018, or get inside the top 125 for limited playing privileges next year. Hee Young Park made the most of that opportunity. Her 3rd place finish was enough to move her from #131 to #90. Her many fans can now rest easier as they will be seeing her full time next season. It wasn't quite as clear for 2 other popular names on the LPGA tour. Belen Mozo's 5th place finish moved her up from #131 to #104 on the money list (exactly where she finished last year), and Cheyenne Woods' 8th place finish moved her from #120 to #107. Both players will retain their cards, but are not guaranteed many starts. They have the option to go back to Qualifying School in December to improve their priority rating.

Brooke Henderson's win this week was her 18th top 25 finish of the year. Only Moriya Jutanugarn has more.

Rolex Rankings Movers of the Week:
There was not much movement amongst the players that played this week in New Zealand. Brooke Henderson makes the most important move, jumping back into the top ten. She moves up from #12 to #10. Outside the top 100, Jing Yan (2nd place finisher in New Zealand) rises from #185 to #140. Lydia Ko, who started the year occupying the #1 spot, falls down to #9.

Race to the CME Globe:   (1 million dollars)
Lexi Thompson continues to lead with 3,221 points. She is followed by So Yeon Ryu with 2,691, Sung Hyun Park with 2,619, Brooke Henderson with 2,546 and In Gee Chun with 2,285. The top five players will hold their own fate in their hands (a win at the CME Group Tour Championship guarantees them the one million dollar bonus).

Who's Hot:
Jennifer Song has two consecutive top ten finishes and has finished in the top 16, four times in the last 6 events.

Who's Not:
Xi Yu Lin has now missed 13 cuts in her last 15 starts. Her best finish over that period was a tie for 33rd.

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

Who was the last person to win both the Player of the Year award and Vare Trophy in the same year?

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