German native, Caroline Masson, picked up her first victory on the LPGA Tour, defeating Karine Icher, Minjee Lee and Mi Hyang Lee by one stroke at the Manulife LPGA Classic. Masson started the day three shots back of the lead and fired a final round six-under par 66 to step inside the winner’s circle.
Masson struggled right away with a double-bogey on the opening hole but quickly recovered with birdies on the next three holes. She finished her round with six additional birdies and two bogeys.
“It's hard to believe. I mean it really is. Obviously I was in a good position coming into today, and I was thinking, well, if I can shoot a really good round, I might have a chance, but I was totally not expecting it,” explained Masson. “I got off to a really bad start. I doubled the first hole and from then on just kind of, well, there's no pressure. You don't have to feel any pressure to win or do anything. Just keep making birdies, and that's what I did all day. I tried to stay relaxed out there, enjoy it. It's such a beautiful day and such a beautiful golf course. I just really tried to have a good time with my caddy, Danny. And yeah, it's unbelievable that it really worked out in the end.”
Fourth-year member, Masson, played consistently this week putting together four solid rounds in the 60s. After finishing she headed to the practice putting green in the event of a playoff. Mi Hyang Lee needed a birdie on the final hole to force a playoff with Masson but was only able to make par giving Masson her first win on the LPGA Tour.
“Yeah, it's a funny feeling. I really expected her to make a birdie. I was going to be prepared to play more golf, and I think that was a good attitude,” said Masson. “It took forever, it felt like. Just waiting, hanging around, trying to keep loose, not think about it. But yeah, I just tried to hit a few putts to distract myself from the situation. And you're never hoping for anything bad to happen, but obviously I was just not really watching. I just heard the reaction, and then when I figured that she didn't make birdie on the last, it was just, yeah, definitely worth it.”