DREAM COME TRUE
Brooke Henderson has always dreamed about walking down the eighteenth fairway as crowds made their way to the green to watch her clinch her first victory. That dream came true Sunday as Henderson coasted her way to an eight-shot victory at the 2015 Cambia Portland Classic.
“Well, it was funny because I don’t know if it was today or yesterday, but when I was a little girl I always pictured the fans around the green and watching another player putt,” Henderson said. “And I saw that just the other day, and I was like, wow, this is pretty cool, and I’m right where I want to be, playing on the LPGA Tour.”
Dreams do come true and for Henderson this is just the beginning. Following the final putt drop on 18, her friends and family ran out to celebrate, dumping water and spraying champagne. It was a scene that Henderson had always imagined.
“It was awesome,” Henderson said. “I was hoping somebody would come out with champagne or water or something and I had lots of people out there. No, it was unbelievable, and I’m soaking wet now.”
Henderson clinched her win in fashion, winning by eight shots, the largest margin of a win this year on the LPGA. As Henderson made her way through the final holes of her final round, her first LPGA career win was in sight and it is something she will never forget.
“The cheer on 17 and the cheer on 18 were something that I never really experienced before, and it’s definitely something I’ll remember.”
DEFENDING CHAMP MAKES A CHARGE
Defending Cambia Portland Classic champion Austin Ernst worked her way back up the leaderboard Sunday in a final attempt to make a charge. Ernst had an up and down day on the course, but was able to shoot 4-under to finish 12-under, T-5 for the tournament.
Ernst looked comfortable playing in the Pacific Northwest this week and had confidence coming down the stretch chasing the leaders for a chance to apply some pressure.
“All week I really I just see my lines well out here off the tee,” Ernst said. “I think I just get in good position…but I just love the golf course. The greens always roll really well. I always putt really well out here. I don’t know whether I see my lines better or if I just trust it more because they roll so good, but I love the golf course, and it sets up really well for my game.”
Ernst looks to take her strong play this week into next week’s CP Canadian Open in attempt to grab Solheim Cup Team USA’s Captain Juli Inkster’s attention. Ernst sits on the outside looking in on Team USA, but hopes through this week and next she will be able to impress.
“I’m just trying to - I really want to make that team,” Ernst said. “Obviously as much as I can do to do that, but I know if I play well, that just kind of maybe I’ll catch Juli’s eye playing well going into it. I feel like my game is turning the right direction…I’m playing really well, putting it really well, which is exciting for me because that’s really what’s been missing all year…Hopefully I can play well there again and hopefully grab one of those last few spots.”
EAGLES FOR A CAUSE
Three total eagles were made on Sunday at the Cambia Portland Classic and players raised $3,000 toward the Wounded Warrior Project as part of the season-long Wounded Warrior Project® Weekends.
The three eagles today, along with the six made yesterday, brings the total for the year to 185 and $185,000 raised.
Wounded Warrior Project® Weekends is a season-long charity program that will be tied into the Race to the CME Globe. Each Saturday and Sunday at LPGA tournaments, CME Group will donate $1,000 to Wounded Warrior Project® for each eagle that is recorded. This amount will increase to $5,000 for each eagle during the weekend of the CME Group Tour Championship and a formal check will be presented to the Wounded Warrior Project® during the trophy ceremony at the CME Group Tour Championship. To get involved and learn more, visit woundedwarriorproject.org.
NUMBERS TO KNOW
3 - With the win Brooke Henderson becomes the third player in LPGA history to win an event before her 18th birthday joining Lydia Ko and Lexi Thompson
2 - Brooke Henderson becomes the second player in LPGA history to win an event after Monday qualifying, joining Laurel Kean who captured the 2000 State Farm Classic