ANDALUCIA, Spain — The pin on the par-3 12th hole had already been peppered with excellent golf shots as Allisen Corpuz, Jennifer Kupcho and Maja Stark had the hole surrounded from approximately eight feet and in. So when Emily Kristine Pedersen stepped on the tee, 7 iron in hand, she had the green light to take it right at the flag and try to do the impossible, something that's been done only one other time in Solheim Cup history.
As most players did on Friday, the Dane hit it to the left fringe, using the steep bank next to the green to help the ball run toward the hole. As it bounced and then raced down the hill, Pedersen's shot started to look better and better, trundling toward the center of the cup with a definitive purpose.
But everyone was still surprised when her ball found the bottom of the cup, maybe Pedersen most of all.
The five-time LET winner let out a scream of excitement, leaping into the arms of Stark's caddie, Hadley Trenfield, then hugging her partner and high-fiving the Americans before being buried in a bear hug by Captain Suzann Pettersen, who couldn't believe what she just witnessed.
"I was standing right there. I saw some fantastic shots before (Emily) came around, and I thought it was an important section of the course to be present and show our presence," said Pettersen. "Emily, first of all, she just hit a 3-wood to tap in on the 11th hole, and then she holes it on the 12th. Unbelievable."
Pedersen has never made a hole-in-one on either the LPGA Tour or Ladies European Tour, making Friday's ace that much more special for the 27-year-old, and it's a moment that she – and fans – will certainly never forget. "It was sick!" said Pedersen. "It was the most ecstatic I've ever been on a golf course. My throat is still sore from all the screaming."
It's the first time since 2013 that there has been a hole-in-one in the Solheim Cup. The last person to do so was 2023 European Vice Captain Anna Nordqvist, who holed out on the par-3 17th hole at Colorado Golf Club with a 7 iron to win her match alongside her partner Caroline Hedwall 2&1 over Morgan Pressel and Jessica Korda.
The Euros ended up tying the match with Kupcho and Corpuz, earning a half point for the European team in the afternoon session. There were a few hole-outs from the Blue and Yellow on Friday and Pedersen's, in particular, was a game-changer, turning the entire story of the match around in a split second and helping the Euros fight hard to the finish. "It just boosted the momentum for Maja and I," said Pedersen. "It was unbelievable."
Even though the ace didn't happen in a regular-season LPGA Tour event, CME Group will still donate $20,000 in Pedersen's honor to St. Jude Children's Research Hospital as part of their CME Group Cares Challenge – Score 1 for St. Jude campaign. The Challenge is a season-long charitable giving program that turns aces into donations with a minimum guaranteed donation of $500,000 to St. Jude Children's Research Hospital, which is leading the way in how the world understands, treats and defeats childhood cancer and life-threatening diseases. Today's ace raises the year's donation total to $320,000.