Fantastic finish: Feng wins in native China
Beijing, China (SportsNetwork.com) - China native Shanshan Feng eagled her final hole on Sunday to win the Reignwood LPGA Classic by a single stroke.
Feng entered the final round with a 1-shot lead over Stacy Lewis and maintained that advantage courtesy of her heroics on the tournament's 72nd hole. She carded a 5-under-par 68 in the final round and finished the event at 26-under 266, picking up her second LPGA Tour victory and first since the 2012 LPGA Championship in the process.
"I would say I'm as happy as when I won the major last year," said the 24- year-old Feng. "This is our first time to have an LPGA event in Beijing, and Reignwood is my new sponsor, so I really wanted to do well to make them look good. And I think I did a great job. I broke my low score for four rounds, and I think I gave all my best."
Lewis also shot 68 to finish alone in second place at 25-under 267, while Inbee Park took solo third at 21-under courtesy of her final-round 68.
Karrie Webb (67) ended alone in fourth at 20-under, Na Yeon Choi (69) placed fifth at 16-under and Yani Tseng (66) grabbed sixth at minus-14.
Beatriz Recari (68), Christel Boeljon (69) and Pornanong Phatlum (71) tied for seventh at 12-under 280.
Feng, the only Chinese golfer (male or female) to win a major championship, played alongside the LPGA standouts Lewis and Park on Sunday and the hometown hero didn't wilt under the pressure.
Lewis started strong, notching birdies at four of her first six holes to take a 2-shot lead over Feng, who had a birdie and five pars over than span.
Lewis, though, cooled from there, carding six straight pars, allowing Feng to pull even with back-to-back birdies from the ninth.
Lewis then birdied the 13th to go back up by a stroke, and the margin remained intact after the duo matched bogeys at the 14th and birdies at the 16th.
At the par-5 last, Feng hit her second shot short of the green, but the ball took a fortuitous bounce onto the green and struck the pin before settling three feet from the cup.
"Actually that shot I didn't go for anything," explained Feng. "I aimed like at the center of the green, just wanted to have a chance to putt, and I actually pushed it a little bit, so it was -- it was right in line with the pin, but I thought it was a little short. And then suddenly while I was walking I heard the noise when (the) crowd went like, 'wow!' I was like, 'what happened?' I was like, 'it must be good because they kept going.' I was like, 'I must be close.'"
Lewis had an 18-foot birdie putt for a potential playoff, but her attempt failed to drop, allowing Feng to seal the dramatic victory with her short, if nerve-wracking, eagle roll.
"I mean last year when I won the major I had a 3-foot putt to win, too," said Feng. "But I ended up winning by two there. I think this one because when I was over in the States last year, I wasn't in the final group, so not many people were watching.
"So this time I'm in the last group, playing with Stacy. I mean we were the only two that were competing. And then all the crowds were going for me, so I actually, you know, I started to aim, line up, and then the longer I stood there, I started to feel like a little shaky, I was like nervous, just wanted to get it done."
NOTES: Feng made 25 starts between LPGA Tour victories ... Feng's final score of 26-under par (par 73) marked the lowest winning score in relation to par for 72 holes this season ... Feng posted her seventh top-10 finish of the season ... Feng became the 12th different winner on the LPGA Tour this season ... This event marked the first time the LPGA Tour visited Beijing ... The field for this event consisted of players from both the LPGA and China LPGA.
10/06 08:46:16 ET