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Stats and Stuff: Solheim Cup teams coming down to final three tournaments

Photo Credit: David Cannon/Getty Images

Cristie Kerr of the USA walks across the 18th green during the morning foursomes on day two of the 2011 Solheim Cup at Killeen Castle Golf Club on September 24, 2011 in Dunshaughlin, County Meath, Ireland.

Solheim Cup teams coming down to final three tournaments
With three consecutive tournaments upcoming, most eyes are on Inbee Park’s opportunity to build on three consecutive LPGA titles and the pursuit of the Grand Slam. But many eyes are on the mountains of Colorado as the Solheim Cup begins in five weeks at the Colorado Golf Club. The U.S. vs. European matches are scheduled for Aug. 16-18 in Parker, Colo., with the teams finalized on Aug. 4 at the conclusion of the Ricoh Women’s British Open.

The LPGA has three events remaining to earn points – this week’s Manulife Financial LPGA Classic, next week’s Marathon Classic and the Aug. 1-4 Ricoh Women’s British Open on The Old Course at St. Andrews. The U.S. team will be composed of the top eight in Solheim Cup points, the top two in the Rolex Women’s World Rankings (those not among the top eight in Solheim Cup points) and two Captain’s picks by U.S. Captain Meg Mallon.

The Ladies European Tour also has three events remaining in the race – next week’s Open de Espana, the following week’s ISPS Handa Ladies European Masters in England and the Women’s British Open. The European team will be made up of the top four in Solheim Cup points, the top four from the Rolex Rankings (excluding those in the top four in Solheim points) and four Captain’s picks by European Captain Liselotte Neumann.

Here’s a glance at the current standings for both 12-player squads:

United States  
Solheim Cup points (top eight)  
1 Stacy Lewis 810.5
2 Paula Creamer 496.5
3 Cristie Kerr 484.5
4 Angela Stanford 351
5 Brittany Lincicome 269
6 Jessica Korda 235.5
7 Lexi Thompson 232.5
8 Brittany Lang 226
9 Lizette Salas 174
10 Morgan Pressel 164.5
11 Jennifer Johnson 153.5
12 Michelle Wie 151.5

Rolex Rankings (top two, excluding Solheim’s top eight)
*2 Stacy Lewis 8.30
*12 Cristie Kerr 5.31
*14 Paula Creamer 5.07
18 Lizette Salas 3.92
*19 Angela Stanford 3.86
*26 Lexi Thompson 3.23
*31 Jessica Korda 3.02
*34 Brittany Lincicome 2.89
*43 Brittany Lang 2.46
51 Morgan Presse l 2.14
56 Jennifer Johnson 1.99
60 Gerina Piller 1.89
73 Nicole Castrale 1.60
74 Danielle Kang 1.59
*- Currently in top eight of U.S. Solheim Cup points.

Solheim Cup points available
(Doubled at Ricoh Women’s British Open)
Place Points
1 60
2 30
3 28.5
4 27
5 25.5
6 24
7 22.5
8 21
9 19.5
10 18

European Team  
Solheim points (top four)  
1 Suzann Pettersen, Norway 163
2 Catriona Matthew, Scotland 136.75
3 Carlota Ciganda, Spain 132.53
4 Caroline Masson, Germany 111.50
5 Caroline Hedwall, Sweden 93.25
6 Giulia Sergas, Italy 91.38
7 Gwladys Nocera, France 87
8 Anna Nordqvist, Sweden 79.50

Rolex Rankings (top four excluding Solheim’s top four)
*3 Suzann Pettersen, Norway 7.96
*13 Catriona Matthew, Scotland 5.10
21 Anna Nordqvist, Sweden 3.60
23 Azahara Munoz, Spain 3.47
24 Beatriz Recari, Spain 3.35
25 Karine Icher, France 3.26
*27 Carlota Ciganda, Spain 3.20
28 Caroline Hedwall, Sweden 3.10
52 Sandra Gal, Germany 2.10
53 Giulia Sergas, Italy 2.09
57 Jodi Ewart Shadoff 1.98
*58 Caroline Masson, Germany 1.98
90 Alison Walshe, Ireland 1.30
99 Karin Sjodin, Sweden 1.20
*- Currently in top four of European Solheim Cup points.

Solheim Cup points available Espana, ISPS Ricoh Women’s British
Place Points
1 40 80
2 24 60
3 18 40
4 16 36
5 14 32
6 12 30
7 10 28
8 8 26
9 6 24
10 4 22

Park back to where the roll started
Last year, Inbee Park held a two-stroke lead entering the final round of the Manulife Financial LPGA Classic but lost in a four-way playoff as Brittany Lang captured her first LPGA title. Park was eliminated on the second playoff hole when she failed to birdie the par-5 finishing hole.

The T2 finish started what has been a remarkable roll through the next year for Park. Over that 26-tournament span beginning in Waterloo, Ontario, Canada last July, Park has seven wins, six runner-ups and 16 top-four finishes. She has amassed $4,193,321 in earnings during that time, more than half of her career earnings ($7,374,551).

Park will turn 25 on Friday (July 12). It will be the third time she has competed in an LPGA event on her birthday – a 75 on her 19th birthday in the first round of the 2007 Jamie Farr Owens Corning Classic (cut) and a 70 in the final round of the 2009 U.S. Women’s Open (T26).

Lang’s strong finish led to first victory
Last year, Brittany Lang won for the first time on the LPGA with a victory at the Manulife Financial LPGA Classic. Somewhere, she probably has a framed photo of the par-5 18th hole at Grey Silo Golf Club to commemorate her win in the inaugural tournament.

Lang birdied the hole all three times in the sudden-death playoff shortly after missing a short birdie putt to win in regulation. In regulation play, Lang made two birdies and an eagle (in the third round) to play the hole 7-under in seven trips. Her third round concluded birdie-birdie-eagle. She hit her second shot to within five feet on the final hole. Lang made only two bogeys last year and none in the final two rounds.

This week’s Manulife Financial LPGA Classic marks the 49th LPGA tournament to be played in Canada and will be the first of two events there this year, with the CN Canadian Women’s Open slated for Aug. 22-25 at Royal Mayfair Golf Club in Edmonton. The first LPGA event in Canada was the 1966 Supertest Ladies Open in London, Ontario where Kathy Whitworth beat Mickey Wright by three strokes. …        LPGA fans looking ahead to the 2016 U.S. Women’s Open will get a look at the San Martin, Calif., course in October when the PGA Tour debuts its new wraparound season schedule (2013-14). The Open will open the 2013-14 slate at CordeValle and then the tournament moves to Silverado in 2014 as CordeValle begins plans to host the 2016 Women’s Open.

Topics: Stats and Stuff, Manulife LPGA Classic, Solheim Cup

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