Stacy Lewis is back in Northwest Arkansas, a place she called home for four years, and is looking to recapture some old magic.
After rising to No. 1 in the world in March, the LPGA golfer has fallen on hard times. In the last month Lewis hasn’t finished higher than a tie for 27th, and has lost that top world ranking.
Lewis won back-to-back tournaments to start the month of March, adding to the SEC and National Championships she won at the University of Arkansas from 2005-2008.
Winning the Northwest Arkansas Championship at Pinnacle CC in Rogers would not only bring back good local memories (she won the shortened event as an amateur in 2007), but also put her back in a groove.
“It’s right up there behind a major,” said Lewis. “I love it. The fans make it so special for me.”
As for the recent slump, Lewis is taking it in stride.
“Golf is on a cycle. You play good golf or bad golf. It’s a roller coaster. I feel like we’re moving in the right direction. I played really well on Sunday last week so I feel like I’m going in the right direction.”
On Tuesday, Lewis took time to play a practice round with current Razorback golfer Gaby Lopez. Lopez is in the tournament on a sponsored exemption.
“It meant a lot,” said Lopez. “She has a great personality. She gave me some tips that I didn’t see when I was practicing by myself. She just loves the game. I can see that. She’s one of my role models. “
“I asked her yesterday if she wanted to play and it made her more comfortable,” said Lewis. “It was fun. It was good to see her play.”
Lopez is playing in her fourth LPGA event. She missed the cut in all the previous three including last year’s Women’s US Open.
This week, she has a different goal.
“Win the tournament,” she said. “I think when Stacy Lewis won it as an amateur, she left a huge mark in me that it is possible. So I believe I can win this tournament.”