The Loop

Ochoa's Uncle Dies; No. 1 to Return Next Week

MT. PLEASANT, S.C. -- Lorena Ochoa, who withdrew from the Ginn Tribute at RiverTowne CC Tuesday when she learned her uncle was serious ill, said Thursday on her Website that Pedro Ochoa, brother of her father, Javier, had died at age 73 in Guadalajara, Mexico. No cause of death was given, although the Website said Pedro Ochoa had been sick for some time.

According to, Ochoa will return next week at the McDonald's LPGA Championship, where she will try to win her second major championship of the year and third in a row. Only Babe Zaharias and Pat Bradley have won three consecutive LPGA majors. Ochoa, the No. 1 player in the Rolex Rankings, has won six times in nine starts this year and 2O times since April 15, 2006.

Suzann Pettersen is the defending champion at the McDonald's, which is played on Bulle Rock GC in Havre de Grace, Md. Ochoa finished T-6 at Bulle Rock last year, six strokes behind Pettersen.

--Ron Sirak