From Tony’s LPGA Report
By Tony Jesselli
We have come to the end of the 2013 LPGA season. A season that was, in my opinion, the best season ever. It certainly seemed that week in and week out, the final result of a tournament wasn’t decided until the 72nd hole. Sometimes it wasn’t even decided then, and we had to go to a playoff.
It was a year with 5 Major Championships, the first 3 won by the same player. We had winners from 8 different countries. I was asking myself, “How can this be topped next year?” Well, Commissioner Michael Whan sure is going to try. His announcement of four new tournaments, 3 on American soil, sure has us looking forward to the start of 2014.
On that note, I would like to look at some of the most important statistics from 2013:
Rolex Player of the Year:
Winner: Inbee Park – 303 points (Gets a Hall of Fame point)
Runner Up: Suzann Pettersen – 258
3rd Place: Stacy Lewis – 220
Inbee won the first 3 Major Championships of the year, and got off to a huge lead.
Suzann outplayed everyone in the second half of the season, but fell short.
Winner: Stacy Lewis – 69.484 (Gets a Hall of Fame point)
Runner Up: Suzann Pettersen – 69.696 strokes per round
3rd Place: Inbee Park – 69.869
Stacy was by far the most consistent player on tour this year. She played 25 tournaments, and had 19 top ten finishes.
Rolex Rookie of the Year:
Winner: Moriya Jutanugarn – 480 points
Runner Up: Caroline Masson – 479
3rd Place: Ayako Uehara – 409
Moriya had a miserable second half to her season, and Caroline had taken a substantial lead going into the final events. Caroline broke her thumb in Japan and played the last couple of events injured, and Moriya snuck in by the smallest possible margin. Ayako had the most amount of points per event, but she played in only 16 tournaments.
Most Consecutive Tournaments Without a Missed Cut: (Current streak)
1- Paula Creamer – 66
2- Na Yeon Choi – 57
3- Stacy Lewis – 44
1- Inbee Park – 6
2- Suzann Pettersen – 4
3- Stacy Lewis -3
Most Top 5 Finishes:
1- Suzann Pettersen -12
2- Inbee Park – 10
3- Stacy Lewis – 9
Most Top Ten Finishes:
1- Stacy Lewis – 19
2- Suzann Pettersen – 15
3- Inbee Park – 11
Most Top Twenty Finishes:
1- Stacy Lewis – 20
2- Na Yeon Choi -18
3- Paula Creamer – 17
Most Wins By Country:
1- South Korea – 10
2- United States – 7
3- Norway – 4
Current Solheim Cup Standings:
1– Lexi Thompson – 142
2- Stacy Lewis – 138
3- Angela Stanford – 56
3- Lizette Salas – 56
5- Michelle Wie – 55
6- Gerina Piller – 54
7- Jennifer Johnson – 39
8- Paula Creamer & Cristie Kerr -36
Stacy Lewis became the first American player to win the Vare Trophy since Beth Daniel in 1994.
Inbee Park is the first Korean born player to win the Rolex Player of the Year Award.
Stacy Lewis’ 69.484 strokes per round, was the lowest since Lorena Ochoa in 2006.
Stat of the Week:
Stacy Lewis will be starting the year 2014 with a streak of ten consecutive top ten finishes, still in tact.
Rolex Movers of the Week:
Shanshan Feng pushes her way up from #7 to #4 in the world. Last week’s runner up Gerina Piller leaps up from #53 to #36.
Sandra Gal and Lexi Thompson have both ended the year on a high note. Sandra has finished in the top 30 in each of her last 9 events, while Lexi has finished no worse than 22nd in her last eight.
Michelle Wie has 5 straight top 25 finishes.
The LPGA is growing quickly under our new Commissioner. Let us all do our part to spread the word and help this tour become the force in women’s sports that it should be. Anyone who hasn’t been out to an event should try to get out to one next year. I assure you, you will want to go back again!