Lexi Thompson calmly rolled in a five-footer on the 72nd hole for birdie to best Stacy Lewis by one shot at the Lorena Ochoa Invitational on Sunday in Guadalajara, Mexico. The 18-year-old phenom shot a final-round three-under 69 to claim her second win of the season and the third of her career.
Thompson and Lewis entered the last hole both tied at 15-under and both watched as their third shots on the par-5 settled about five feet from the pin.
”First off, I had like a 50- to 60-footer for the first one, which was interesting getting up there within a few feet,” Thompson said. ”You know on the second putt, that’s what it all came down to thinking I can make it and went up to it confidently. Just knock it in.”
Thompson made hers, while Lewis’ putt slid past the hole.
”I knew I had to make it,” the reigning British Women’s Open champ said about her birdie try on the final hole. ”I had a good line on it, just with these greens, those downhill putts are the hardest ones to make. I hit a good putt. I hit it where I wanted to. It just didn’t go in.”
Added Thompson: “Stacy is an amazing player. I knew she could make a run at me any time during that round. When she made the two shot swing on me, I think on number 12, it brought it back to all squared. I knew I had to make birdies on top of her because she gets on a roll and she doesn’t stop.”
The victory bumped Thompson to no. 10 in the Rolex World Rankings. She is now the second-highest ranked American player after world no. 3 Lewis.
Thompson won the Sime Darby LPGA Malaysia last month, and captured her first career title at the 2011 LPGA Navistar Classic at age 16. She joins Lewis, Inbee Park, Suzann Pettersen, and Beatriz Recari as the five multiple winners this year.
Meanwhile, Park, who won the season’s first three majors, wrapped up the points-based Player of the Year honors. Surprisingly, she is the first South Korean to win this award.
The LPGA Tour caps off its season with this week’s CME Group Titleholders at Tiburon Golf Club in Naples, Florida.