LPGA.com counts down to the end of 2011 with the LPGA Tour's 11 top stories of the year. Join us as we look back at the year's most memorable milestones. Read about teen Lexi Thompson's record-setting LPGA win in Story No. 2.
Lexi Thompson Becomes Youngest Player To Win On LPGA
Florida teen Lexi Thompson became the youngest winner in the 61-year history of the LPGA Tour with her five-stroke victory at the Navistar LPGA Classic in September.
Thompson was 16 years, 7 months and 8 days old when she carded her final-round score of 2-under 70 to finish at 17-under 271 on the Robert Trent Jones Golf Trail Senator course at Capitol Hill in Prattville, Ala. The teen pocketed a first-place check of $195,000, donating $20,000 of her prize to The Wounded Warrior project.
Thompson carried a five-stroke lead into Sunday's final round and played steady for the majority the round. She stumbled only with two consecutive bogeys on holes No. 11 and 12, but the teen held her composure and made back-to-back birdies on holes No. 16 and 17. She just missed making a birdie on the final hole that would have given her four straight rounds in the 60s.
Prior to Thompson's win, LPGA founding member Marlene Hagge had previously held the distinction as the LPGA's youngest winner. Hagge was 18 years and 14 days old when she won the 1952 Sarasota Open, which was an 18-hole event. Hagge won two 18-hole events at age 18. The youngest winner of a multi-round event on the LPGA Tour had been Paula Creamer, who captured the 2005 Sybase Classic at 18 years, 9 months and 17 days.
In 2007, Thompson became the youngest player to qualify for the U.S. Women's Open at the age of 12. That same year, she also won the Westerfield Junior PGA Championship to become the youngest winner in Junior PGA Championship history.