The Ascendant LPGA benefiting Volunteers of America is returning to the Old American Golf Club in The Colony Texas for its tenth playing. The event will celebrate its decennial anniversary with one of the strongest fields in its history.
A 10 YEAR HISTORY LESSON
The event began with its first iteration -- the North Texas LPGA Shootout -- played in April 2013. Inbee Park was crowned the tournament’s first winner with a 13-under par performance, just one shot ahead of Spain’s Carlota Ciganda. Park would win again in 2015, shooting an improved minus-15.
Korean players have dominated the event since, with Jenny Shin (-14), Sung Hyun Park (-11) and Jin Young Ko (-16) combining with Park for five wins.
DEFENDING CHAMPION STAYING IN TEXAS
Despite having a home just 15 minutes away in Frisco, Texas, Rolex Rankings World No. 1 and defending champion Jin Young Ko will not be competing this year. Ko has not played since the CP Women’s Open due to a lingering injury she described as an overworked wrist. Ko won the 2021 tournament after shooting 8-under par in the opening round, tying the tournament scoring record of 63.
Despite the loss of No. 1 Ko, the tournament will still boast a host of talent. Six of the top-10 players in the world will compete: Nelly Korda (2), Atthaya Thitikul (3), Lydia Ko (5), Brooke Henderson (6), Lexi Thompson (8) and Nasa Hataoka (10).
PAST WINNERS WITH LOCAL FLAVOR
Cheyenne Knight and Angela Stanford will make the five-hour trip from the Walmart NW Arkansas Championship presented by P&G to The Colony, Tex. with a little more pep in their step. For Knight, an Aledo-native, and Stanford, a Fort Worth-native, this upcoming competition will be a return home.
Besides seeing family and friends, both can also look forward to playing some good golf. Knight and Stanford have found success at the Old American Golf Club, winning in 2019 and 2020 respectively. Knight shot a tournament record minus-18 to win by two strokes over fellow American Brittany Altomare.
FIFTH ANNIVERSARY AT THE OLD AMERICAN
Starting in 2018, this tournament has been hosted by the Old American Golf Club and is the first and only elite professional competition held at the course. The club was built in 2010 and designed by Tripp Davis and 12-time PGA Tour winner Justin Leonard.
NEW NAME, BIGGER PURSE
On August 17, the LPGA Tour and Outlyr announced that Ascendant National Title, a Cypress Ascendant Company, was partnering with the Volunteers of America to serve as co-title sponsors for the event starting in 2022. With the new partnership comes a $1.7 million purse -- a $200,000 increase -- and enhanced onsite experiences for players throughout the week.