If she hadn’t proved it as an amateur, Lydia Ko showed on Sunday that she can be a force to be reckoned with on the LPGA Tour.
Ko shot a final-round 69 to earn her third career LPGA win – and first as a pro – at the Swinging Skirts LPGA Classic for a one-stroke victory over 2012 Rolex Player of the Year Stacy Lewis to further cement her legacy as an up-and-coming star on the Tour. There’s no doubt that Ko is a bonafide star, and Sunday proved that even more.
Ko outdueled Lewis over 18 holes this time, proving she will be tough to deal with in future months and years, and the number of wins she can amass is seemingly endless. It will be fun to see what she can do on Tour.
Next up is the North Texas LPGA Shootout Presented by JTBC, a second-year event that was immensely popular last year. Inbee Park, who tied for fourth in San Francisco, is the defending champion, and she will be the player to beat this year as she enjoys yet another stellar season at the top of the LPGA Tour.
Park needed three rounds in the 60s last year to reign supreme, and there’s no reason to believe it will be any easier this year at Las Colinas Country Club. Any player posting three, or even four, rounds in the 60s will have a great chance to emerge victorious at the tournament, an event that players really enjoy playing in.
The field is wide open for this week’s tournament, and anyone hoping to build upon their legacy has a great chance to do so at the $1.3 million event. Park will have her hands full with the likes of world No. 2 Suzann Pettersen, Lexi Thompson, Michelle Wie and Lewis, so it should be quite the four days in Texas.
The tournament would not be possible without The Nexus Club, which has been dedicated to bringing golf back to the North Texas area after a 20-year absence. It has returned, and with a vengeance, in the form of the LPGA Tour event.
The tournament benefits LPGA-USGA Girls Golf programs in North Texas, so LPGA players are more than eager to participate in the ancillary activities. It’s a great tournament for the LPGA and its charities and beneficiaries, and Tour players understand what it takes to make a difference.
The North Texas LPGA Shootout was a great addition to the LPGA Tour schedule in 2013, and there’s no reason to think it won’t be a massive success again this season. Only time will tell who will add their name to the illustrious list of LPGA players who have won tournaments in Texas.