Cristie Kerr collects 19th LPGA win at Lotte Championship
Cristie Kerr won her 19th career LPGA event, finishing the Lotte Championship with a tournament-record 20-under-par 268. The 39-year-old Kerr, who hasn’t won on the LPGA since 2015 and had knee surgery five months ago, made six birdies and no bogeys during her final-round 66 at Ko Olina Golf Club in Kapolei, Hawaii. She won by three shots over Lydia Ko, In Gee Chun and Su-Yeon Jang. Kerr earned $300,000 for the win, allowing her to surpass the $18 million mark in career LPGA money.
"Experience is huge," said Kerr after her win. "Very few players are lucky enough like I am to have a career as long as I've had and be competitive as long as I've been competitive. Having that experience and being competitive, it's an advantage, I think. I think I was able to, when I felt like I didn't have it on the first four our five holes, I didn't worry, I didn't rush, and soon as I made my first birdie it was kind of like off to the races."
Going into Saturday’s final round, Kerr was three behind Jang, who was playing in the event under a sponsor’s exemption. On the final day, Jang was the only player in the top 22 who didn’t shoot under par. Jang made her first bogey and double bogey of the tournament on the front nine and shot even-par 72 for the round.
The last two rounds of the event were encouraging for Lydia Ko. The World No. 1 made the cut by one, but then shot rounds of 65 and 64 to finish in a tie for second. Though she opened with a 73, Ko only made one bogey for the next three rounds.