Inbee Park Wins 2013 Wegmans LPGA Championship

Inbee Park (click to enlarge)

Babe Zaharias, Patty Berg, Mickey Wright, Sandra Haynie, Pat Bradley and Annika Sorenstam. Before the 2013 Wegmans LPGA Championship that was the list of players who won the first 2 LPGA Majors of the year. Bradley and Sorenstam were members of an even more exclusive club, that of players to win the Kraft Nabisco Championship and LPGA Championship in the same year. There is a new member of those elite sororities. Inbee Park took her position as a new star in both constellations of all-time greats by capturing the first 2 Majors of 2013, the Kraft Nabisco Championship and Wegmans LPGA Championship. In a sudden death playoff, Inbee bested Catriona Matthew with a birdie on the 3rd hole to win her 7th LPGA tournament and 4th of 2013.

Morgan Pressel (click to enlarge)

Forced to play 36 holes on Sunday due to a Thursday rain out, it appeared Inbee Park and Morgan Pressel would have company at the top of the leaderboard in the final 18 holes from fellow Major winners Jiyai Shin, Na Yeon Choi and Sun Young Yoo. Instead, that trio of great champions would wilt, leaving an almost match-play feel between Inbee and Morgan. A birdie by Pressel on 8 paired with a bogey by Park on the same hole resulted in a tie at 7-under on the 9th tee. After the turn, bogeys by Morgan on 10 and 12 coupled with a birdie by Inbee on 11 provided the world #1 with a 3 shot cushion. Pressel wouldn’t get closer than 2 shots until the 18th, when she shaved the difference to 1 as Park almost gave away the tournament with 3 bogeys in the final 5 holes. It would prove too little, too late for Morgan, made all the more maddening by a long birdie attempt on 14 that was half-way down the hole before spinning out. In fact, it was Suzann Pettersen racing up the leaderboard with the low round of the day who looked like the player that would benefit from the shaky play of Inbee on the back 9. Ultimately, Tutta also hit the accelerator too late to match or overtake Park. The player who would have the opportunity to make Inbee pay for falling from 8-under after the 3rd round to 5-under at the end of 4th round regulation play was 2009 Women’s British Open champion Catriona Matthew.

Catriona Matthew (click to enlarge)

Starting her 4th round 7 shots south of Inbee Park at 1-under, Matthew carded a bogey-free 4-under 68 to catch the falling Inbee at 5-under. Momentum clearly appeared to be with Catriona going into the playoff. Give Inbee credit. Her mettle, not only her skill, was called upon and she answered in triumph. The playoff started on the par 4 18th. Considering how Inbee came in down the back 9, you had to wonder if she might effectively lose with a pulled tee shot. She did manage to find the fairway and the green, but she was far left on the green. Matthew hit a 7-iron approach shot from 145 yards to around 15 feet of the pin. Advantage Matthew. However, Catriona and Inbee would both 2-putt for par. The 2nd hole of the playoff was hole 10, also a par 4 and the 2nd most difficult hole of the day. Matthew sliced far right off the tee into the rough with a bad lie. Advantage Park. Catriona received a momentary reprieve when Inbee hit the green but had to deal with a tricky slope. After hitting from the rough to the fairway, Matthew stuck her 3rd shot 5 feet from the hole. Although Park had a birdie putt to win, it was a long putt from a severe shelf. She hit a great putt to 1 foot, but it was not enough to end matters as both players settled for par. It was back to 18 for a third playoff hole. Like the previous hole, Catriona went far right into the rough again, ceding the advantage to Inbee who nestled in the fairway.  As the shadows started to creep across Locust Hill Country Club, the sun began to set on Matthew. Inbee’s 2nd shot landed on the green around 20 feet from the the hole while Catriona’s 2nd shot went from the right rough to the left rough in a horrible lie. Matthew’s 3rd shot dribbled out to the primary cut of rough well short of the green. She needed a miracle 4th shot to have any chance. It was not to be as she managed to find the green but left Inbee needing only to 2 putt to win. One of the greatest putters on tour, Inbee wouldn’t keep us in suspense. She nailed the 20-footer for birdie, the championship and back to back Major victories.

Inbee celebrates her birdie on the 3rd playoff hole (click to enlarge)

A few final thoughts. Great effort from Catriona Matthew, who at 43 still has world-class golf in her. For Morgan Pressel, she joins Matthew and Amy Yang in qualifying for the 2013 CME Group Titleholders. More importantly, she earned some much needed Solheim points. That was also true for Michelle Wie, the only other American to finish in the top 10 at Wegmans. There were 2 players, Chella Choi and Amy Yang, among the players tied for 5th that I look at in a similar light. Both are very talented. Both have knocked on the door, but have yet to achieve their first LPGA victory. I don’t want to say it’s just a matter of time, because you never know. Several years ago I would have said it was only a matter of time before Angela Park won her first LPGA event. Who knows what the future will bring? When players have a chance to win, they have to close the deal. I certainly hope Amy and Chella do cash in on their first wins, especially since Chella’s dad, who wants to retire from being her caddie, doesn’t get to do so until she earns her first LPGA title. Finally, Inbee Park, the champion. The best women’s player in the world. It’s amazing how much things have changed since the beginning of the year. At that time, it seemed this tour was firmly in the hands of Stacy Lewis, then-#1 and winner of back to back tournaments early in the year. 2 Majors later, and Inbee is clearly atop the mountain. The question now is where the evolution of Park leading. She’s a 3 time LPGA Major winner. She’s won a Major on the JLPGA. She’s ranked #1 with 4 victories in 2013 with 15 events still to play. Are we witnessing the beginning of a phase in her career that will lead to all-time great status or is she merely a great player on a great run? I can’t wait to find out.

ALL PICS CLICK TO ENLARGE

INBEE PARK

CATRIONA MATTHEW

AI MIYAZATO

NA YEON CHOI

CHELLA CHOI

with her dad/caddie, Ji Yeon Choi

MICHELLE WIE

SUN YOUNG YOO

CHIE ARIMURA

CAROLINE MASSON

LYDIA KO

IN KYUNG KIM

PAULA CREAMER

MORGAN PRESSEL

AYAKO UEHARA

Pos Name 1 2 3 4 Playoff Today Total Strokes Purse
1 x-Inbee Park 72 68 68 75 11 -5 283 $337,500
2 Catriona Matthew 71 71 73 68 13 -5 283 $206,304
T3 Suzann Pettersen 72 73 74 65 -7 -4 284 $132,716
T3 Morgan Pressel 68 70 71 75 +3 -4 284 $132,716
T5 Chella Choi 67 73 73 72 E -3 285 $72,288
T5 Jiyai Shin 68 73 69 75 +3 -3 285 $72,288
T5 Amy Yang 71 70 74 70 -2 -3 285 $72,288
T5 Sun Young Yoo 73 69 70 73 +1 -3 285 $72,288
T9 Na Yeon Choi 72 70 70 74 +2 -2 286 $46,121
T9 Shanshan Feng 74 70 72 70 -2 -2 286 $46,121
T9 Michelle Wie 76 68 71 71 -1 -2 286 $46,121
T12 Cristie Kerr 75 72 70 70 -2 -1 287 $37,122
T12 Caroline Masson 74 69 71 73 +1 -1 287 $37,122
T12 Anna Nordqvist 71 74 73 69 -3 -1 287 $37,122
T15 Kristy McPherson 73 72 69 74 +2 E 288 $31,851
T15 Ai Miyazato 74 75 66 73 +1 E 288 $31,851
T17 Lydia Ko 77 70 73 69 -3 +1 289
T17 Brittany Lincicome 69 73 77 70 -2 +1 289 $29,367
T19 Beatriz Recari 74 71 73 72 E +2 290 $26,957
T19 Jennifer Rosales 76 71 70 73 +1 +2 290 $26,957
T19 Yani Tseng 72 74 71 73 +1 +2 290 $26,957
T22 Mina Harigae 75 74 73 69 -3 +3 291 $22,873
T22 Eun-Hee Ji 72 72 74 73 +1 +3 291 $22,873
T22 Danielle Kang 75 72 72 72 E +3 291 $22,873
T22 I.K. Kim 75 74 73 69 -3 +3 291 $22,873
T22 Mika Miyazato 77 71 71 72 E +3 291 $22,873
T22 Jenny Shin 78 70 70 73 +1 +3 291 $22,873
T28 Stacy Lewis 74 72 76 70 -2 +4 292 $18,478
T28 Pernilla Lindberg 73 71 71 77 +5 +4 292 $18,478
T28 Se Ri Pak 70 74 76 72 E +4 292 $18,478
T28 Angela Stanford 71 71 75 75 +3 +4 292 $18,478
T28 Lexi Thompson 71 73 73 75 +3 +4 292 $18,478
T33 Chie Arimura 71 72 73 77 +5 +5 293 $15,389
T33 Danah Bordner 73 71 73 76 +4 +5 293 $15,389
T33 Haeji Kang 73 74 71 75 +3 +5 293 $15,389
T33 Karrie Webb 76 72 75 70 -2 +5 293 $15,389
T37 Carlota Ciganda 75 71 71 77 +5 +6 294 $12,296
T37 Moira Dunn 75 71 75 73 +1 +6 294 $12,296
T37 Caroline Hedwall 77 71 70 76 +4 +6 294 $12,296
T37 M.J. Hur 71 74 76 73 +1 +6 294 $12,296
T37 Paige Mackenzie 76 74 71 73 +1 +6 294 $12,296
T37 Mo Martin 77 73 71 73 +1 +6 294 $12,296
T37 Ji Young Oh 75 72 71 76 +4 +6 294 $12,296
T44 Vicky Hurst 73 72 77 73 +1 +7 295 $9,623
T44 Candie Kung 75 75 71 74 +2 +7 295 $9,623
T44 Pornanong Phatlum 72 74 73 76 +4 +7 295 $9,623
T44 Giulia Sergas 76 72 73 74 +2 +7 295 $9,623
T44 Ayako Uehara 76 73 73 73 +1 +7 295 $9,623
T49 Lisa Ferrero 78 71 71 76 +4 +8 296 $8,414
T49 Jessica Korda 70 74 76 76 +4 +8 296 $8,414
T51 Paola Moreno 74 74 73 76 +4 +9 297 $7,794
T51 Hee Young Park 75 71 75 76 +4 +9 297 $7,794
T53 Nicole Castrale 73 72 77 76 +4 +10 298 $7,003
T53 Laura Diaz 75 73 73 77 +5 +10 298 $7,003
T53 Ilhee Lee 71 74 74 79 +7 +10 298 $7,003
T53 Sarah Jane Smith 72 69 76 81 +9 +10 298 $7,003
T53 Mariajo Uribe 76 74 74 74 +2 +10 298 $7,003
T58 Paula Creamer 76 71 76 76 +4 +11 299 $5,987
T58 Breanna Elliott 75 74 77 73 +1 +11 299 $5,987
T58 Lorie Kane 74 74 74 77 +5 +11 299 $5,987
T58 Belen Mozo 77 71 74 77 +5 +11 299 $5,987
T62 Jacqui Concolino 78 70 77 75 +3 +12 300 $5,478
T62 Lisa McCloskey 74 72 76 78 +6 +12 300 $5,478
T64 Laura Davies 71 73 80 78 +6 +14 302 $5,026
T64 Marcy Hart 78 71 75 78 +6 +14 302 $5,026
T64 Moriya Jutanugarn 74 74 72 82 +10 +14 302 $5,026
T64 Mi Hyang Lee 75 71 78 78 +6 +14 302 $5,026
T64 Jane Park 74 74 78 76 +4 +14 302 $5,026
T64 Melissa Reid 76 74 76 76 +4 +14 302 $5,026
70 Alison Walshe 75 74 77 77 +5 +15 303 $4,631
71 Amelia Lewis 74 74 78 78 +6 +16 304 $4,519
T72 Tiffany Joh 77 72 78 78 +6 +17 305 $4,405
T72 Sue Kim 75 74 81 75 +3 +17 305 $4,405
T72 Brittany Lang 75 71 80 79 +7 +17 305 $4,405
75 Kathleen Ekey 76 74 79 78 +6 +19 307 $4,292
76 Lauren Doughtie 75 75 81 80 +8 +23 311 $4,240
WD DeDe Cusimano WD WD WD WD WD WD WD
WD Maude-Aimee Leblanc WD WD WD WD WD WD WD
DQ Victoria Tanco DQ DQ DQ DQ DQ DQ DQ
T77 Silvia Cavalleri 77 74 MC MC 151
T77 Paz Echeverria 75 76 MC MC 151
T77 Jennifer Johnson 75 76 MC MC 151
T77 Christina Kim 74 77 MC MC 151
T77 Jennie Lee 73 78 MC MC 151
T77 Becky Morgan 74 77 MC MC 151
T77 Kayla Mortellaro 77 74 MC MC 151
T77 Lizette Salas 75 76 MC MC 151
T77 Stephanie Sherlock 77 74 MC MC 151
T77 Jennifer Song 77 74 MC MC 151
T87 Heather Bowie Young 77 75 MC MC 152
T87 Austin Ernst 78 74 MC MC 152
T87 Jodi Ewart Shadoff 78 74 MC MC 152
T87 Natalie Gulbis 78 74 MC MC 152
T87 Jill McGill 76 76 MC MC 152
T87 Jane Rah 76 76 MC MC 152
T87 Dewi Claire Schreefel 77 75 MC MC 152
T87 Lindsey Wright 77 75 MC MC 152
T95 Dori Carter 79 74 MC MC 153
T95 Sandra Gal 79 74 MC MC 153
T95 Maria Hjorth 76 77 MC MC 153
T95 Katherine Hull-Kirk 76 77 MC MC 153
T95 Amy Hung 75 78 MC MC 153
T95 Seon Hwa Lee 78 75 MC MC 153
T95 Azahara Munoz 79 74 MC MC 153
T95 Ryann O’Toole 80 73 MC MC 153
T95 So Yeon Ryu 76 77 MC MC 153
T95 Hee Kyung Seo 74 79 MC MC 153
T95 Thidapa Suwannapura 79 74 MC MC 153
T95 Momoko Ueda 79 74 MC MC 153
T107 Sandra Changkija 74 80 MC MC 154
T107 Katie Futcher 76 78 MC MC 154
T107 Pat Hurst 79 75 MC MC 154
T107 Karine Icher 78 76 MC MC 154
T107 Felicity Johnson 74 80 MC MC 154
T107 Sarah Kemp 80 74 MC MC 154
T113 Christel Boeljon 78 77 MC MC 155
T113 Katie Burnett 78 77 MC MC 155
T113 Julieta Granada 80 75 MC MC 155
T113 Lisa Grimes 74 81 MC MC 155
T113 Mitsuki Katahira 81 74 MC MC 155
T113 Meena Lee 76 79 MC MC 155
T113 Sydnee Michaels 81 74 MC MC 155
T113 Gerina Piller 79 76 MC MC 155
T113 Nicole Smith 75 80 MC MC 155
T113 Kris Tamulis 81 74 MC MC 155
T123 Amanda Blumenherst 80 76 MC MC 156
T123 Daniela Iacobelli 79 77 MC MC 156
T123 Juli Inkster 78 78 MC MC 156
T123 Rebecca Lee-Bentham 81 75 MC MC 156
T123 Jin Young Pak 79 77 MC MC 156
T123 Reilley Rankin 75 81 MC MC 156
T123 Alena Sharp 79 77 MC MC 156
T130 Meaghan Francella 82 75 MC MC 157
T130 Sue Ginter 81 76 MC MC 157
132 Cindy LaCrosse 80 78 MC MC 158
133 Jeong Jang 72 78 WD WD 150 $4,186
134 Wendy Ward 80 78 MC MC 158
T135 Nicole Jeray 78 81 MC MC 159
T135 Eunjung Yi 79 80 MC MC 159
T137 Julia Boland 83 77 MC MC 160
T137 Mindy Kim 81 79 MC MC 160
139 Stephanie Ferguson 82 80 MC MC 162
140 Sara Maude Juneau 82 81 MC MC 163
141 Jean Bartholomew 81 87 MC MC 168
142 Irene Cho 76 WD WD WD 76
143 Sophie Gustafson 77 WD WD WD 77
144 Karen Stupples 79 DQ DQ DQ 79
145 Hee-Won Han 80 WD WD WD 80
146 Stacy Prammanasudh 81 WD WD WD 81
147 Veronica Felibert 84 WD WD WD 84
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One thought on “Inbee Park Wins 2013 Wegmans LPGA Championship

  1. Pingback: 2013 Wegmans LPGA Championship - Page 7 - LPGA Tour Forum

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