Cristie Kerr became the Prudential Rock Solid Performer of the week after winning the Michelob ULTRA Open at Kingsmill.
Kerr breaks 54-hole tie to capture 2009 Michelob ULTRA Open at Kingsmill
American notches 12th-career LPGA victory; becomes first two-time winner at Kingsmill
WILLIAMSBURG, Va., May 10, 2009 - Once her final putt dropped on the 72nd hole of Kingsmill Resort & Spa's River Course, 12-time LPGA Tour winner Cristie Kerr became the first two-time champion of the Michelob ULTRA Open at Kingsmill.
Kerr used a final round 1-under-par 70 - with birdies on holes four, 15, and a bogey on hole 13 - to finish at 16-under-par 268 (69-63-66-70) and secure her 12th LPGA Tour victory by two strokes over 2008 Longs Drugs Challenge champion In-Kyung Kim (68-64-67-71=270, -14).
"It was pretty tight all the way through there until the last couple of holes, and I just tried to play my own game," said Kerr, who is sixth on the LPGA Career Money List with more than $9.6 million in career earnings since 1997. "I tried to be good mentally on every shot, and the momentum kind of swung in my favor when I birdied 15, and held par on 16."
On a day that began with Kerr and Lindsey Wright, of Australia, tied for the lead and only a two-stroke separation between the top-four players on the leaderboard, the final round stayed pretty close through 15 holes for the last two groups. On hole 16, Kerr was the only player of the final two pairings who managed to save par on the par-4, 405-yard hole, and that turned out to be the final break she needed to claim the $330,000 winner's check.
"That's the toughest pin on the golf course, and my caddie, John Killeen, and I just said game plan is to be 10 yards short of the pin no matter what we're hitting in," Kerr said. "I was hitting middle right center of the green and I kind of pulled it a little bit, but I hit a really solid shot, and it left me with a really tough putt. And I did everything I could to get it six feet by the hole, and I made it for par. So that hole was a bear today."
This week's victory for the Florida native is Kerr's first since the 2008 Safeway Classic Presented by Pepsi last August. Kerr was also among three players of the 75 who made the cut to card all four rounds under par. Her second-round, 8-under-par 63 tied a tournament record.
Kim, who hails from South Korea, finished up the week 14-under-par 270 to pick up her second runner-up finish and 14th top-10 finish in her three-year LPGA Tour career. Kim moved up the leaderboard as the tournament progressed with post-round standings of tied for ninth, tied for second and third entering Sunday's final round.
"I played solid all week, I think," Kim said. "I hit the ball well, especially onto the fairways and greens. On the weekend, I had some three-putts, and that really killed me in the end. But, I think it's all a good experience. I was in control, I think, and I played better than last time. I wish I could have made more birdies, and hopefully I can win some tournaments."