LPGA History: The 2000s

2000:

Karrie Webb took home two major championships – the Kraft Nabisco and the U.S. Women’s Open. Juli Inkster won the McDonald’s LPGA Championship, and Meg Mallon won the final edition of the du Maurier.

Sisters Annika and Charlotta Sorenstam won LPGA events in back-to-back weeks. Older sister Annika won the Welch’s Circle K in Tucson, Arizona. The next week, little sister Charlotta captured her first LPGA win at the Standard Register PING in Phoenix, Arizona.

Karrie Webb won both the Rolex Player of the Year award and Vare Trophy for the second consecutive year. She won seven times and led the LPGA official money list.

24-time LPGA Tour winner Judy Rankin was inducted into the LPGA and World Golf Halls of Fame in the Veteran’s Category.

 
2001:

Annika Sorenstam became the first LPGA Tour player to break 60. She fired a second-round 59 at the Standard Register PING at Moon Valley Country Club in Phoenix, Arizona. That same week she also broke the LPGA record for the lowest 72-hole score in relation to. Sorenstam shot 27-under-par (65-59-69-68).

The Women’s British Open was designated as an LPGA major championship. The event was won by Se Ri Pak at Sunningdale Golf Club in Berkshire, England.

Karrie Webb won two major championships for the second consecutive year. She successfully defended her U.S. Women’s Open at Pine Needles Lodge and Golf Course in Southern Pines, N.C., and also won the McDonald’s LPGA Championship. Annika Sorenstam won the Kraft Nabisco.

24-time LPGA Tour winner Donna Caponi was inducted into the LPGA and World Golf Halls of Fame in the Veteran’s Category.

 
2002:

Juli Inkster became the second oldest female player, after Babe Zaharias, to win the U.S. Women’s Open when she hoisted the trophy at Prairie Dunes in Hutchinson, Kansas. Inkster was 42 years, 13 days old. Inkster won the U.S. Women's Amateur on the very same course 22 years earlier.

Annika Sorenstam swept the year-end awards.  She led the LPGA money list, captured the Vare Trophy and was named the Rolex Player of the Year. She also led the Tour in wins with eleven.

Four different LPGA players won major championships. Juli Inkster – U.S.  Women’s Open, Annika Sorenstam – Kraft Nabisco Championship, Se Ri Pak – Weetabix Women’s British Open and Karrie Webb – McDonald’s LPGA Championship.

LPGA Founder and 26-time LPGA Tour winner Marlene Hagge was inducted into the LPGA and World Golf Halls of Fame in the Veteran’s Category.

 
2003:

Beth Daniel became the oldest player in LPGA history to win a tournament when she captured the Canadian Women’s Open at Point Grey Golf and Country Club in Vancouver, Canada. Daniel was 46 years, eight months and 29 days old.

Annika Sorenstam set a 54-hole, scoring record – 24-under-par – at the Mizuno Classic. She fired rounds of 63-63-66 on the Seta Golf Course in Shiga, Japan.

Lorena Ochoa was named the Louise Suggs Rolex Rookie of the Year. Ochoa posted eight top-10 finishes, including two runner-ups. She finished ninth on the year-ending LPGA money list.

Annika Sorenstam was inducted into the LPGA and World Golf Halls of Fame.

 
2004:

Minea Blomqvist set the record for the lowest round in an LPGA major championship when she fired a third-round 62 (-10) at the Women’s British Open at Sunningdale Golf Club in Berkshire, England.

Grace Park won her first Vare Trophy, while Annika Sorenstam claimed her seventh Rolex Player of the Year award. Sorenstam also led the LPGA money list.

Grace Park won her first LPGA major championship at the Kraft Nabisco. Annika Sorenstam won her second consecutive McDonald’s LPGA Championship; Meg Mallon won her second career U.S. Women’s Open at The Orchards in South Hadley, Mass.

Karen Stupples won her first LPGA major at the Weetabix Women’s British Open at Sunningdale in Berkshire, England. Stupples started the final round with back-to-back eagles on the opening two par-5 holes. Stupples shot a final-round 64 to post a five-shot victory over Rachel Hetherington.

 
2005:

Annika Sorenstam tied Nancy Lopez’s record for most consecutive wins in tournaments participated when she won the Kraft Nabisco Championship. (2004 Mizuno Classic, 2004 ADT Championship, 2005 MasterCard Classic, 2005 Safeway Classic, 2005 Kraft Nabisco Championship)

Annika Sorenstam set the record for the most consecutive wins at the same tournament with her fifth straight victory at the Mizuno Classic.  With the fifth win, she also tied LPGA and World Golf Halls of Fame members Mickey Wright and Kathy Whitworth for the record for most wins at the same tournament.

Annika Sorenstam captured her third consecutive McDonald’s LPGA Championship and her third career Kraft Nabisco Championship. Jeong Jang won the Weetabix British Open.  Birdie Kim won the U.S. Women’s Open by holing out from a greenside bunker on the 72nd hole to edge out amateurs Morgan Pressel and Brittany Lang by two strokes.

Annika Sorenstam won her eighth Rolex Player of the Year award, an LPGA all-time record.  She posted victories in 10 of the 20 events in which she played.

Karrie Webb was inducted into the LPGA and World Golf Halls of Fame.

 
2006:

The LPGA Tour devised the first-ever playoff system in the world of professional golf with the season-ending ADT Championship. The tournament awarded the highest first-place prize in LPGA history - $1 million.

Lorena Ochoa tied the LPGA record for the lowest round in an LPGA major championship. She carded a first-round 62 (-10) at the Kraft Nabisco Championship, tying the record set by Minea Blomqvist in 2004.

Karrie Webb fired a final-round 65 to win her seventh career major championship at the Kraft Nabisco. Webb won in dramatic fashion, holing out a 116-yard wedge shot to force a playoff with Lorena Ochoa. Webb defeated Ochoa on the first hole of the sudden-death playoff.

For the first time in LPGA history three of the four major championships were decided in playoffs. Webb defeated Ochoa at the Kraft Nabisco Championship, Se Ri Pak defeated Webb in a playoff at the LPGA Championship, and Annika Sorenstam defeated Pat Hurst in an 18-hole playoff at the U.S. Women’s Open.

Sherri Steinhauer became the second oldest player, behind Fay Crocker, to win an LPGA major Championship at the Weetabix Women’s British Open. Steinhauer was 43 years, 7 months and 10 days old.

LPGA Founder and 18-time LPGA Tour winner Marilynn Smith was inducted into the World Golf Hall of Fame for Lifetime Achievement.
 
2007:

The RICOH Women’s British Open was played for the first time on the Old Course at St. Andrews in St. Andrews, Fife, Scotland. Lorena Ochoa won her first LPGA major championship with a four-stroke victory over Maria Hjorth and Jee Young Lee.

Se Ri Pak tied the LPGA record for most wins at the same tournament when she captured the Jamie Farr Owens Corning Classic for the fifth time. She tied Mickey Wright, Kathy Whitworth and Annika Sorenstam.

Morgan Pressel became the youngest player in LPGA history to win an LPGA major championship at the Kraft Nabisco. Pressel was 18 years, 10 months and nine days old when she hoisted the trophy.

Se Ri Pak was inducted into the LPGA and World Golf Halls of Fame.

 
2008:

The LPGA Tour instituted the first-ever drug testing policy in the world of professional golf.

Annika Sorenstam stepped away from the LPGA Tour to focus on family and business interests. In her final year, she won three times, posted 10 top-10s and finished fourth on the LPGA money list.

Lorena Ochoa dominated the year-end awards. She led the LPGA money list, won the Rolex Player of the Year award and claimed the Vare Trophy.

Lorena Ochoa captured her second career LPGA major championship at the Kraft Nabisco; Yani Tseng became a Rolex First-Time winner when she won the McDonald’s LPGA Championship as an LPGA rookie. Tseng was named the Louise Suggs Rolex Rookie of the Year.

Inbee Park won the U.S. Women’s Open and became only the fifth player in USGA history to win both the U.S. Girls Junior and the U.S. Women’s Open. Jiyai Shin won the RICOH Women’s British Open as a non-LPGA member. She also won the Mizuno Classic and the ADT Championship before joining the LPGA Tour in 2009.
 
2009:

Catriona Matthew won her first major championship at the RICOH Women's British Open, a mere 11 weeks after giving birth to her second daughter. Matthew carded rounds of 74-67-71-73 at historic Royal Lytham and St. Annes in Lancashire, England. Matthew became the first player from Scotland to win an LPGA major.

Jiyai Shin became the first player from South Korea to win the LPGA money title. Shin won three times, earned $1,807,334 and was named the Louise Suggs Rolex Rookie of the Year. Shin also finished one point behind Lorena Ochoa in the Rolex Player of the Year race.

Lorena Ochoa won the Rolex Player of the Year award and Vare Trophy for the fourth consecutive time.

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