10 Notes to Know: September 14, 2020

September 14, 2020
Justin Ray
  1. Mirim Lee birdied the first playoff hole to win the ANA Inspiration, her first career major championship title. The shot of the tournament came on Lee’s final hole – a chip-in eagle at 18 to get her into the playoff against Brooke Henderson and Nelly Korda. Lee won despite hitting only 11 greens in regulation in the final round, her lowest total of the week.
  1. Lee won the sixth ANA Inspiration title for players from South Korea. Since the beginning of 2012, players from South Korea have won nearly half of the majors contested in the women’s game – 20 of 41.
  1. 17-year-old American Rose Zhang – who won the U.S. Women’s Amateur earlier this summer – shot an 8-under 280 for the week. It’s the lowest 72-hole amateur score in ANA Inspiration history, breaking the previous mark of 7-under held by Michelle Wie (2004) and Caroline Keggi (1988).
  1. 47-year-old Stewart Cink won his first PGA Tour title since the 2009 Open Championship, taking the Safeway Open by two strokes. 196 different players won on the PGA Tour between Cink victories – a span of more than 4,000 days.
  1. Cink ranked second in the field for the week in strokes gained tee-to-green and second in scrambling. In both the third and final rounds, Cink ranked second in the field in strokes gained off the tee, hitting double-digit fairways and averaging more than 320 yards on measured drives in each round.
  1. George Coetzee went bogey-free his last 29 holes to win the Portugal Masters, the fifth European Tour victory of his career. Coetzee led the field in strokes gained putting in the win. Tommy Fleetwood, who finished tied for third, led the tournament in strokes gained tee-to-green by more than five full strokes.
  1. Next week will be the U.S. Open at Winged Foot – the latest the U.S. Open has been played in a calendar year since 1913. That year, amateur Francis Ouimet pulled off one of the greatest upsets in golf history, beating famed British professionals Harry Vardon and Ted Ray.
  1. Brooks Koepka will not be in the field, having withdrawn from the championship last week. Koepka finished first, first and second the last three years at the U.S. Open – the first player to finish top-two in the championship three straight years since Bobby Jones in 1928, 1929 and 1930. Koepka’s cumulative score to par of 25-under in the U.S. Open from 2017-19 is the best in any three-year stretch in the history of the championship.
  1. Winged Foot has been an extremely difficult test over the years when hosting the U.S. Open. In 2006, Geoff Ogilvy won despite not recording a round under par. No major champion since has done that. Of U.S. Open venues to host the championship three or more times since 1970, Winged Foot has yielded the highest scoring average, at 75.45.
  1. Dustin Johnson will draw plenty of pre-tournament interest this week – the world number one led all players in the FedExCup Playoffs in scoring, greens in regulation and strokes gained tee to green. Johnson has either led or co-led after eight U.S. Open rounds in his career. Over the last thirty years, only Payne Stewart (12) and Tiger Woods (11) have led more often.