Lewis captures LPGA title, jumps to second in rankings


Stacy Lewis fired a three-under par 69 on Sunday to win the $1.3 million Navistar LPGA Classic for her third title of the year and a jump from third to second in the world rankings. Lewis, whose only prior career title came at a major in last year’s LPGA Kraft Nabisco, finished on 18-under 270 for 72 holes to beat defending champion Lexi Thompson by two strokes. The US teen star fired a closing 66.
“You have to hit it good here and hit some tricky putts,” Lewis said. “It’s stressful this course. Somebody can get on a good run and make a lot of birdies. And 16, 17 and 18 are tough finishing holes.”
South Koreans Haeji Kang and M.J. Hur each fired 68 to share third with American Angela Stanford on 273.
Lewis also took the Shoprite LPGA Classic in June and the Mobile Bay LPGA Classic in April, where she also held off a final round charge by 17-year-old Thompson for a one-stroke triumph. “She’s a great player,” Thompson said of Lewis. “Very consistent. Amazing putter.” Lewis stretched her lead in the LPGA Player of the Year race over World No. 1 Yani Tseng of Taiwan as the tour prepares for an Asian stretch ahead of November’s season-ending Titleholders event in Naples, Florida.
“Same goals, go out there and try to win every week,” Lewis said. “Player of the Year is the ultimate goal. This helps a lot.”
Lewis stumbled early with a bogey at the second hole, answered with a six-foot birdie at the par-5 fifth, then followed with back-to-back birdies at nine and 10, from 18 and 10 feet respectively.