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Del Paso Passes U.S. Senior Open Test with Flying Colors Maggert finishes atop heavyweight leaderboard; four NCGA members qualify

Ko Knows Lake Merced World No. 1 celebrates 18th birthday by defending Swinging Skirts title


hen most teenagers turn 18, they celebrate by picking up a lottery pick.

Lydia Ko hit a $270,000 jackpot. Two days after celebrating her

18th birthday, Ko defended her Swinging Skirts LPGA Classic title with a playoff win over one-time teenage prodigy Morgan Pressel at Lake Merced GC. “At the start of the day, I didn’t

know how it was going to go,” Ko said. “It’s been a great birthday week again.”

Ko finished at 8 under, holing an

8-foot birdie putt on the final hole of regulation to tie Pressel and force a playoff, and won the title two holes later with another birdie on No. 18. Pressel was searching for her first win since the 2008 Kapalua LPGA Classic. She led by two with four to go, but suffered two bogeys, and failed to birdie the par-5 18th hole. Brooke Henderson, a 17-year-old Canadian who was trying to become just the third player to win on the LPGA before the age of 18, finished one shot out of the playoff. She led by as many as five in the third round, and still took a one-stroke lead going into Sunday, before closing with a 2-over 74.

The win was Ko’s second of the

season, and moved her to No. 1 on the LPGA Tour money list. The New Zealander also tied Annika Sorenstam’s LPGA Tour record of 29 straight rounds under par earlier this year.

16 / NCGA.ORG / SUMMER 2015

birdie putt on his final hole in the first round for a chance to shoot his age—at an Open. Ten players began the final round


within one stroke of the lead. Hometown kid Kevin Sutherland

had a chance to win at his home club of Del Paso until the 70th hole. Lee Janzen began the final round

five strokes back and shot 6-under 64, only to be outplayed by playing partner Bill Andrade’s 63. Defending champ Colin Mont-

gomerie hit his goal of finishing 8 under, only to be passed by win- ner Jeff Maggert’s second 65 of the tournament.

But just as impressive as Mag-

gert’s 10-under-par performance was the one put on by Del Paso. “I really think the big winner this week has been Sacramento and the

Kevin Sutherland

he first U.S. Senior Open in Northern California had it all. Tom Watson just missed a

golf course,” said Sutherland. “The golf course has been received incredibly well. I’ve had so many guys who said they want to come back and just play. Doesn’t have to be a tournament. They enjoyed it that much.” They enjoyed it despite scorch- ing weather that climbed past triple digits the first two days, and rough that Watson called, “as tough as I’ve seen for a U.S. Open or U.S. Senior Open.” “We’re putting on ideal greens,

perfect conditions with perfect speed,” added Janzen. Four NCGA members were able

to experience the perfect course: 52-year-old Jeff Wilson, 56-year-old Randy Haag, 58-year-old Terry Foreman and 62-year-old Jim Knoll. Wilson, who was playing in his

third straight U.S. Senior Open, and Haag both finished at 8 over to miss the cut by three. Terry Foreman finished at 10

over, surviving a wild opening-day 76 that included his driver breaking while he warmed up for his first- ever U.S. Senior Open round. But he still kept it in perspective. “Every now and then I would

look around and go, ‘God, I’m in the Open right now.’ And I’d look up at the blimp and see the cam- eras,” Foreman said. “This is what I worked for.” Knoll shot 81-77, but was able to

enjoy the experience. “It’s really special to be here,”

said Knoll, who also played in the 2006 and 2007 U.S. Senior Opens. “I’m probably the oldest non-exempt player here. So that feels good.”


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