Arkansan Stacy Lewis Among Top Pick to Win LPGA
The Walmart Northwest Arkansas Championship presented by P&G kicks off Friday, and an overwhelming majority of people say their money is on Benton County native and University of Arkansas alumni, Stacy Lewis.
“I think she will probably do an awesome job, I wish her the best of luck,” said Shelley Bailey, who played at The Creeks golf course in Cave Springs on Saturday.
The LPGA tour will showcase eight of the world’s top-10 players, including the highest-ranking female American, No. 2 Stacy Lewis. Lewis has been playing golf since she was 8 years old. Now, 19 years later, she is one of the top women golfers in the world.
“We would all love Stacy Lewis to play well,” said Paul Hughes. “Stacy Lewis has always been a big Hog fan, and she’s been having a lot of success lately. It should give her one of her best chances to win this year.”
Avid golfer, Stephen Smith, says Lewis has a leg up on her competition because she knows the Pinnacle Country Club’s course in Rogers very well.
“I think she has a good chance,” said Smith. “I think that it plays into her advantage a lot on that course. Her games have been coming together rather well lately, so I think she has a good chance to win.”
Many are looking forward to the economic impact of this year’s tour.
“Everybody gets excited about the LPGA because it means so much to the economy,” said Kerry Bailey. “It means so much to a lot of people here. They enjoy the opportunity to put the area on the map from a showcase standpoint in golf. And not only that, but really for the whole entire area because they get to participate. And I think that’s important for the businesses and the commerce of the area.”
The LPGA qualifying rounds get underway Monday. The tournament itself starts Friday through July 1.
This year`s championship will have an estimated charitable impact of more $400,000. The money will go to several local organizations.
A $2 million purse is up for grabs, making it one of the top five purses.
First place pays $300,000.
The defending champion and top woman golfer in the world is Yani Tsen. Ranked third is Na Ya Choi, followed by ShanShan Feng in fourth.
Tickets can be purchased at www.nwachampionship.com, or by calling (479) 715-6100.
Admission is free to the public Monday through Thursday. Otherwise, daily tickets are $25. Week-long passes are $50. Children age 17 and younger are free when accompanied by a ticketed adult.
To see the complete tour schedule, click here.