Inbee Park wins third consecutive KPMG Women's PGA Championship

Inbee Park reclaims No. 1 ranking in women's golf with her third straight win in the Women's PGA Championship

Inbee Park shot a final round 68 and finished at 19 under par to win the KPMG Women's PGA Championship for the third consecutive year and retake the No. 1 ranking in women's golf.

The 26-year-old from South Korea made five birdies and shot a bogey-free round at the Westchester Country Club, finishing the season's second major five strokes ahead of 22-year-old compatriot Sei Young Kim on Sunday.

Park, who shot a 273 for the tournament, tied the Tour record for the lowest score in a major in relationship to par and finished the four rounds with 22 birdies and just three bogeys.

It was her fifth major championship in the last 12 played on the LPGA Tour since the beginning of 2013.

“I played great the last three days,” she said. “I couldn't believe myself. I made no bogeys for three days.”

This is Park's sixth major title. She ties Annika Sorenstam (2003-2005) as the only golfers who have claimed this championship in three consecutive years.

Park's last birdie came on the final hole. She chipped her second shot to within five feet of the pin, then sank the ensuing putt and threw her arms in the air as a fan yelled “three-peat.”

It was her 56th consecutive hole without a bogey.

The rookie Kim, who was trying to win her first major, started the day two strokes back She bogeyed the third and the fourth holes, but then reeled off four consecutive birdies, including long birdie putt on the eighth to pull within a shot of the lead.

That was as close as she would get.

A three-stroke swing on the ninth hole put Park in charge. She hit a birdie putt, then watched as Kim three-putted for double bogey.

“Everything fell apart at the ninth hole,” Kim said through an interpreter.

American Lexi Thompson ended up in third place. She had eight birdies on her first 13 holes Sunday and shot a 66 to finish at 12 under.

Brittany Lincicome, who won the first LPGA major of the year at the ANA Inspiration, finished in fourth place at 11 under. She shot a final-round 68 that included a birdie on the final hole.

Seventeen-year-old Canadian Brooke Henderson finished in a tie for fifth place with Morgan Pressel at 10 under par. The prize money will help in Henderson's quest to earn a Tour card for next year. She needs to either win a tournament or finish with an equivalent of a top-40 on the money list to avoid qualifying school after being denied an age exemption.

::

Fabian Gomez of Argentina won his first PGA Tour title at the St. Jude Classic in Memphis, Tenn., beating England's Greg Owen by four strokes.

Gomez, 36, started the round tied with Owen atop the leaderboard at 9 under with 23 players within four strokes. Gomez shot four-under 66 for a 267 total for the win. He carded a five birdie-one bogey round for his first PGA title in his 70th start in a season already featuring three top 25s.

Taking home the winner's check of $1.08 million is a nice turnaround for Gomez who had to earn back his tour card through the Web.com Tour last year.

Owen finished with a 70 for a final of 271.

Phil Mickelson remains winless since the 2013 as he tied for third (65-272). He finished with a flourish, rolling in a 25-footer for birdie that nearly lipped out on No. 18.

::

Bernhard Langer has won the Senior Players Championship for the second year in a row. It's his fifth major on the Champions Tour.

The two-time Masters winner shot a three-under 68 in the final round  to finish at 19 under. That's six strokes ahead of Kirk Triplett, who shot 64 to vault into second place at 13 under.

Langer is the first golfer to win the tournament in back-to-back years since Arnold Palmer 30 years ago. The 57-year-old German earned his 24th victory on the Champions Tour, tying him with Miller Barber for fourth all-time. Langer opened with two 65s in a row, then shot 67 in the third round on Saturday to improve to 16-under.

Russ Cochran opened the day eight strokes back in second place and shot 69 to tie for third with Joe Durant and Colin Montgomerie.

Copyright © 2016, Los Angeles Times
51°