At the start of the week Stacy Lewis pledged any winnings to the Houston relief effort, she then won for the first time in three years, and 83 starts, at the Portland Classic. In that time there have been 12 runners-up finishes.
Lewis, who has lived in Houston since she was 11, was pushed all the way by In Gee Chun as her closing three-under 69 gave her her 12th win on Tour and one that ranked alongside her two majors. Her sponsor KPMG then matched the $195,000 pay cheque to help repair some of the damage caused by Hurricane Harvey.
“I was hoping some of my sponsors would step up and donate a little bit. Obviously I wasn’t expecting the match from KPMG,” said Lewis. “When I said that I had the goal of winning the tournament, you’ve got to get a lot of things right, to go your way. Just what we’re going to be able to do, we’re going to be able to help rebuild houses and get their homes back. That’s more important than anything.”
— LPGA (@LPGA) September 3, 2017
Of the win she added: “I knew I could win, but it’s always hard. I was fine until [my husband] showed up and then I started crying. But just have to him here and have him support me, you know, the last two and a half three years has been really hard.
“It’s been really frustrating at times. You go through all the emotions of finishing second when sometimes it’s your fault and sometimes it’s not, and things just don’t have seem to ever go your way and you get really frustrated at times. He went through all of that with me, and it was probably as hard on him as it was on me.”
Lewis’ husband is the head women’s golf coach at the University of Houston.
In the end Lewis had to make a par putt of eight feet at the 17th to stay ahead of Chun and then found a fairway bunker at the last. From there she hit a brilliant shot to the back of the green and two-putted from distance.
Chun finished with a 66, Moriya Jutanugarn and Brittany Altomare finished tied for third five shots back of the Korean. Two-time defending champion Brooke Henderson was progressing to a nice finish but tripled the last to tie for 15th.