Lorena Ochoa cruised to an 11-shot victory at the HSBC Women’s Champions. Annika Sorenstam won the battle for second place, finishing at -9. Paula Creamer was third at -7, Laura Diaz fourth at -6 and Stacy Prammanasudh and Karrie Webb tied for fifth at -5.
Another day, another round in the 60s for Ochoa – 68 with no bogeys, read the Sunday card. Her -20 total is staggering – the other 12 players who finished under par were only a combined -49. From totaling up nearly four seasons of tournament scoring, I can tell you that is an unusual and impressive feat. Lorena’s average score of 67 will be at least six strokes better than the tournament average. She birdied the 9th hole all four days and birdied 4 and 16 three times apiece.
Sorenstam only had to post 71 to secure runner-up status. Birdies at 13 and 16 locked up that spot. Creamer fell by the wayside with a 73, Webb dropped back with a 74 while Diaz and Prammanasudh were too inconsistent to put on any pressure. Christina Kim (68 -3) and Lindsey Wright (66 -2) made the best Sunday runs, both of them reaching the top 12.
In a field of this caliber, a Big Surprise can sometimes be hard to find. I’ll go with Na Zhang, the 26-year-old former amateur champ from China who finished T14. As for the Big Disappointment – TC’s comment yesterday at Mostly Harmless sways me. I’ll pass on Mi Hyun Kim this time, giving her a break because of her knee situation. Both Se Ri Pak and Cristie Kerr withdrew on Sunday after playing poorly for three days. I’ll cut Pak some slack because of her shoulder and for giving her the award last week, and give the Big Disappointment to Kerr.