PGA Championship

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Chevron Championship

Lexi Thompson's major struggles continue; retiring So Yeon Ryu bids farewell

April 19, 2024
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Lexi Thompson hits a drive during the second round of the Chevron Championship.

Icon Sportswire

THE WOODLANDS, Texas — Ten years after Lexi Thompson's lone major triumph at 19 years old in the 2014 ANA Inspiration (now Chevron Championship), Thompson missed the two-over cutline at the same major by six shots with scores of 78-74. It's her sixth missed cut at a major over her last seven starts, with Thompson averaging 74.4 over the stretch, including 14 consecutive rounds in the 70s. Thompson declined to talk after play Friday.

The performance at Carlton Woods continues a drastic drop-off from Thompson's consistency at majors over the previous decade. She had at least one top-five at a major every season from 2013 to 2022, including four runner-up finishes.

The 29-year-old's best results, however, include multiple lost chances at a second major title. At the 2017 ANA, Thompson was told she was penalized four strokes after a viewer emailed the LPGA that she had not properly replaced her ball during the third round. She went on to lose to So Yeon Ryu in a playoff.

Thompson lost a five-shot lead on the back nine of the 2021 U.S. Women's Open to finish in third. At the KPMG Women's PGA Championship the following year, she surrendered a two-shot lead with three holes to play at the Congressional Blue Course and ended up T-2.

Since Congressional, Thompson's only made major cut was at the Women's PGA last year. With five holes remaining in her second round, Thompson carded four birdies to make the weekend. She finished T-47.

Thompson struggled for most of last season until late in the year. She went 3-1-0 at the Solheim in September, then finished in the top 10 in her final three starts of the campaign: A T-8 at the NW Arkansas Championship, fifth at the Ascendant LPGA, and a T-7 at The Annika, to help improve her status for 2024. The 11-time LPGA winner continued playing well in the early part of this season, including a T-3 finish at the Ford Championship three weeks ago.

Here are the nine other notable players who joined Thompson in missing the cut:

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Jin Young Ko plays a shot on the second hole during the second round of the Chevron Championship.

Andy Lyons

Jin Young Ko (76-71, three over)

The 2019 ANA Inspiration winner never recovered from her first nine of the tournament. On Thursday, Ko carded a five-over 41 on the inbound side. Ko played the rest of the championship at two under, leaving the 15-time winner a shot shy of playing the weekend in her first domestic start of the 2024 season.

Angela Stanford (74-73, three over)

Stanford's 98th career major appearance fell just short of making the weekend. After an eagle on the par-5 13th brought Stanford to one over with five to play on Friday, the 46-year-old bogeyed the 15th and 16th to fall a stroke outside the cutline.

Stacy Lewis (74-73, three over)

Lewis went out Friday with a clean two under opening side to get back to even par with nine holes to play. The 2015 ANA Inspiration champion posted four bogeys over her final nine holes to drop outside the cut line. The Woodlands, Tx., native has not made the weekend in two starts at Carlton Woods.

Alison Lee (78-70, four over)

Lee birdied six of her final 14 holes but ended up two shy of the weekend. This is the first missed cut of 2024 for the No. 14 player in the world.

Patty Tavatanakit (77-71, four over)

Tavatanakit's second nine Thursday pushed her out of the cutline when she shot 40. The 2021 ANA Inspiration winner has yet to find her footing at Carlton Woods, finishing T-41 last season.

Rose Zhang (74-75, four over)

Zhang's pro Chevron debut at Carlton Woods ended early. She was inside the cutline until the par-4 10th, where she carded her only double bogey of the week.

So Yeon Ryu (77-74, seven over)

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So Yeon Ryu is celebrated after finishing her round on Friday. (The Chevron Championship)

Ryu announced her plans to retire following this year’s Chevron a month ago. The former World No. 1 failed to make the weekend, but remained upbeat as she exits the LPGA stage.

"I feel truly blessed,” Ryu said. “Right now really feel like I need to go to the airport and going to the next tournament, and I just need it grind it, but I really appreciative to everything.”

She was greeted by a parade of her peers waiting to hug her after walking off the 18th green Friday. The 2017 ANA Inspiration major champion made every cut at the tournament from 2010 through 2022.

Minjee Lee (74-77, seven over)

Lee got off to a strong start at the Chevron with two birdies over her first five holes to sit at two under. She'd only card one birdie the rest of the way, including a 39 on the back nine for a five-over second round. The Australian missed her first cut at a major since the 2019 Evian Championship.

Danielle Kang (74-79, nine over)

A slow start to the season continues for the 31-year-old. Kang has one top-20 finish in five starts this year. She's a combined 28 over par in her last four rounds, including an 83-80 finish at Shadow Creek.