June 8, 2005
Annika keeps adding to her Hall of Fame stats
By TOM WILLIAMS
When Annika Sorenstam stood over her ball just off the 18th green on Sunday afternoon at the ShopRite
LPGA Classic, she knew it would take a disaster for her not to win her 61st LPGA championship. Still,
she wanted to make sure.
What happened next appeared on newscasts and SportsCenters all over the country for the next 24 hours.
She rolled in a 40-footer for an eagle that increased her margin of victory from two strokes to four.
It was the third time the 34-year old Hall of Famer had won the ShopRite, played on the Bay Course at the
Marriott Seaview Golf Resort and Spa in Galloway Township. It was also her fifth win this season in the
seven times she has played.
“I knew Laura (Davies) had started strong,” said Sorenstam. “I watched the leader board and saw she’d
moved into the lead. But I just focused on what I needed to do. Then I didn’t hear any more cheering ahead
of us, so things seemed to settle down.”
Sorenstam had trailed her Hall of Fame playing partner, Juli Inkster, by two strokes after the first round,
played in a steady rain. Then Davies, who needs two more wins to join Sorenstam and Inkster in the LPGA
Hall of Fame, came back into the picture with a tournament record 62 on Saturday, despite a shower of
With a nice win in her pocket on the first weekend of June, Sorenstam can now focus on the rest of the
month. The McDonald’s LPGA Championship, one of four majors in the tour, is this weekend in Maryland.
Two weeks later, it’s the Women’s Open just outside Denver.
“Next week is a big week and the week I’ve been looking forward to for a long time,” said Sorenstam, who
has won the McDonald’s championship the last two years. “I feel like I’m putting the ball well. I’m prepared.
I’m ready to go.
“To win a tournament, a lot of things have to go right. Hopefully I can continue to play well, hit the ball good.
That’s what you have to do every week, especially in a major.”
By shooting a 64 on Sunday, Sorenstam has now shot 11 consecutive rounds in the 60s, tying an LPGA
record she set in 2002. She’ll try to extend that record when the McDonald’s LPGA begins Thursday. You
can catch all four rounds on The Golf Channel (channel 40 on most Comcast systems).
While Hall of Famers Sorenstam and Inkster and future Hall of Famer Davies made most of the headlines,
there was another record-breaker.
Jimin Kang, a 25-year old from South Korea with a dazzling smile, had plenty of reason to flash that smile
on Sunday. She was rolling along at two-over-par through eight holes. The final 10 holes of her round went
something like this – birdie, par, birdie, par, birdie, birdie, birdie, eagle, birdie, birdie.
When the smoke cleared, Kang had shot a 27 on the back nine, tying an LPGA record by being 8-under
for nine holes. She also equaled the tournament record 62 set by Davies the day before.
But the weekend, like so many, belonged to Sorenstam, the greatest player in the history of women’s golf
and one of the most dominant athletes in any sport.
This year’s ShopRite LPGA Classic was another success, driven by Larry and Ruth Harrison and their
highly talented staff, with great assistance from thousands of volunteers. They all looked even happier than
usual Sunday when all the golf was finished.
And why not.
Because she won this year, they know that Annika Sorenstam will return again in 2006.
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