With the start of play at the LPGA Pure-Silk Classic delayed until Friday, May 24, I was treated to a replay of the final holes of the RR Donnelley LPGA Founders Cup tournament in Phoenix last week. I enjoy tournament replays because, knowing the outcome, I can concentrate on those small moments of excellence that tend to get lost in the broader canvas of an unfolding tournament. Overall, Stacy Lewis played brilliantly and showed her best stuff. She took full advantage of Ai Miyazato’s errant shot into the desert scrub, which led to a disastrous double bogie, pull into first place and take control of the tournament. I missed one shot, however, that was worth seeing again.
Lewis’s most impressive shot, for me, however, came a bit before the late turnover, on the par 3 14th hole. Her tee shot left her on the edge of a green-side bunker, facing an elevated chip onto a downward sloping green. I’ve face this shot and I know how difficult it can be. With her ball perched on the bunker lip and very little room to secure her footing and line up, Lewis hit a delicate chip that landed softly and left her with a long but makable putt for par. She made an incredibly tough shot look easy and followed that chip with a cool, deliberate putt that marked the beginning of the turnaround. I hope I can keep the image of her setup and swing in my memory bank and put it to work the next time my ball lands on the lip of a bunker.
I predict going in to the Pure-Silk Bahama Classic that Stacy Lewis will be the one to beat! Her confidence is high and her game is ramped up. I intend to keep an eye on her all weekend.