So Yeon Ryu is as resilient as she is consistent.
Sunday, Ryu captured her fifth career win on the LPGA Tour at the Walmart NW Arkansas Championship presented by P&G. With her victory, Ryu ascends to No. 1 in the Rolex Rankings for the first time in her career.
“Dreams come true! I always dreamed about it. I cannot believe it. I didn’t expect two good things coming together,” Ryu said reacting to the news. “First of all, I really want to appreciate everyone who has been supportive of me, to make me the No. 1 player in the world. That’s finally made my dream. This is going to be my first week as the No. 1 player in the world. I know it’s going to be a lot of pressure and I know I can handle a lot of different things.”
Ryu’s victory made a statement as she put on a record-setting performance in Arkansas. She set the new tournament record with a 10-under 61 on Saturday, which resulted in a new 36-hole record at 16-under par. Ryu posted a final-round 69 to finish the week at 18-under par, which sets a new tournament record previously held in 2016 by Lydia Ko, who finished at 17-under par. Ryu, who won the ANA Inspiration in April for her second major victory, becomes the first two-time winner of 2017 with her victory in Arkansas.
“I’m glad to be a multiple winner, and also this is not the first time I’ve won more than once in a year, so hopefully many more to come,” Ryu said after her round.
For Amy Rogers’ full final-round recap, visit http://www.lpga.com/news/2017- quick-recap-final-round- walmart-nw-arkansas- championship
SO YEON RYU – REWRITING THE RECORD BOOKS
With the victory, So Yeon Ryu became the first multiple winner of the 2017 season, joining her win at the ANA Inspiration; 15 players had previously won titles in 2017, which ties 1991 for the longest stretch to begin a season in LPGA history
Ryu’s three-day total of 18-under 195 makes her the seventh player to break a tournament scoring record in 2017.
Ryu’s second-round 61 was the lowest 18-hole round in Walmart NWA history, breaking the previous mark of 62 (Ayako Uehara, 2016; Lydia Ko, 2016; Angela Park, 2012; Jane Park, 2012)
Ryu also set the tournament 36-hole record at 126; the previous record of 128 was set by Ko and Morgan Pressel in 2016
Ryu’s second-round 61 tied her career-low round, which she shot at the 2012 Australian Ladies Masters; her previous LPGA low was a 62 at the 2012 Jamie Farr Toledo Classic, which she went on to win
Ryu also set an LPGA career-low with her 36-hole score of 126; her previous low score was a 129 at the 2014 Canadian Pacific Women’s Open, which she also went on to win
A FUN WEEK FOR WIE
Michelle Wie continued her strong play on Sunday, carding a 7-under 64 and notching her fifth top-10 finish of 2017. Wie, who is looking for her first victory since taking the 2014 U.S. Women’s Open title, credited one simple factor for her success - fun.
“I had fun this week,” said Wie, who has finished in the top-four in her last three events. “Arkansas has a lot of great memories for me. I’ve had a lot of low rounds here, so it was nice to bank off of that, and, you know, it was a fun week.
“I think I’m just having a lot of fun out there, and I play my best golf when I’m having fun, and for me that’s a really important component.”
ACE FOR ALEX
Marina Alex recorded the shot of the day with a hole-in-one on the par-3 sixth hole.
“It was a 6 iron from 169, and the wind was going kind of right to left,” Alex explained. “So we kinda just went straight at the pin, and I was trying to hit a little cut against the wind. It was tucked on the right. And it landed just perfect on the green. It probably flew, like, I don’t know, 160, and then it rolled in. It was awesome.“
The ace was the second of the season for Alex and the fourth of her career. Alex was congratulated by her friends on social media, including Michelle Wie, who tweeted that drinks will be on Marina tonight.
“I don’t know,” Alex said of her plans to celebrate. “We’re both going to still be here tonight, so who knows, it could get wild.”
USA SOLHEIM CUP UPDATE
Eight Americans earned Solheim Cup points this week, led by Michelle Wie and Stacy Lewis, who tied for fourth.
With the solid finish, Wie moves from eighth in the standings into seventh ahead of next week’s KPMG Women’s PGA Championship, where Solheim Cup points are doubled. There are now only six events and three majors left before the teams are decided following the Ricoh Women’s British Open.
The Solheim Cup combines the tradition and prestige of the game of golf with passion for one’s country. This biennial, trans-Atlantic team match-play competition features the best U.S.-born players from the LPGA Tour and the best European members from the Ladies European Tour. This year’s Solheim Cup will take place from Aug. 14-20 at Des Moines Golf and Country Club in Iowa.
Mina Harigae shot a career-low 9-under 62 on Sunday; her previous best was a 64 at the 2013 Manulife Financial LPGA Classic
“As tired as I am this week, it’s so much fun. There’s no place like this on Tour. The way the fans support us and just here to watch the golf. The fans were unbelievable today for me and also for So Yeon, they were cheering her on as well. I just love this week. I wish we could have more of these.”
- Stacy Lewis, on the fans and atmosphere during the Walmart NWA
“This tournament is one of my favorite tournaments. One day I really want to win this tournament. But she was so far ahead, I just came out here, tried to do my best. I’m hitting it really good and making a lot of putts.”
- Amy Yang, who shot a 7-under 64 on Sunday to finish tied for second
Senior Manager, Tour Media
[gallery link="file" columns="2" size="medium" ids="9202,9203,9204,9205,9206"]