Julie Inkster had chalked up 8 L.P.G.A. victories before Paula Creamer was born. Had she won today she would have been the oldest L.P.G.A. winner at 47. She just missed. Creamer holed a about a 10 footer for birdie on the 2nd playoff hole to rack up her 6th career victory in the SemGroup Championship.
There were multiple ironies at work here. Inkster lost here last year in a playoff to Mi Hyun Kim. Creamer lost last week in a playoff with Annika Sorenstam. She evidently learned a little about playoff golf in a week. The final round was really a match play tournament as the rest of the field was so far behind they were playing for 3rd place. By rights, a balky putter most of the day prevented a Creamer victory in regulation. She'd missed a couple of three footers in regulation and a ten footer on the 18th hole of regulation that forced the playoff.
It was a great finish to watch. Inkster and Creamer are great friends. The empathetic look on Inkster's face when Creamer missed the potential winning putt on the 18th hole was wonderful to see. As much as she felt for Creamer though, there was no mistaking Inkster's desire to dispatch her. Interesting dynamics from two intense competitors. As an aside, Lorena Ochoa's win streak ended at four.
Anthony Kim became the youngest winner on the P.G.A. Tour in 6 years by running away with the Wachovia Championship. He was never seriously threatened by posting a final round 69. His 272 total beat the tournament record held by Tiger Woods by 3 strokes. Ben Curtis had the day's best 65 and still finished 5 behind Kim. Kim became the youngest winner since Sergio Garcia and proved he made the right decision by turning pro after having been named the freshman of the year at Oklahoma.
Next week the boys move to The Players Championship, considered by many to be the 5th major. The women are at Kingsmill for the Michelob ULTRA Open.
*Average Golfer pet peeve.....When will ESPN2 remove the insidious trailers and score updates that reduce the usable size of my TV screen to 7 inches. I have to work to see the player's heads for crying out loud! Seriously, this would prevent me from watching a less riveting tournament.