Webb rallies for second straight title

Karrie Webb rallied to win the LPGA Founders Cup for her second straight victory, shooting a 6-under 66 on Sunday to beat Brittany Lincicome and Paula Creamer by a stroke.

PHOENIX — Karrie Webb rallied to win the LPGA Founders Cup for her second straight victory, shooting a 6-under 66 on Sunday to beat Brittany Lincicome and Paula Creamer by a stroke.

Webb won when Lincicome bogeyed the final hole, missing a 10-foot par putt.

“I didn’t think I’d be sitting here today talking about winning,” Webb said. “But now that I am, it’s such a great honour to win this tournament.”

The 36-year-old Hall of Famer, the winner three weeks ago in Singapore, earned US$200,000 for the Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation and Japan relief efforts in the charity event at Wildfire Golf Club.

The Reeve Foundation supports spinal cord research, treatment and rehabilitation for those living with paralysis. Kelvin Haller, Webb’s longtime coach back in Ayr, Australia, is a quadriplegic. He was paralyzed in an accident 20 years ago.

“That’s why I’ve been associated with them. It’s near and dear to my heart,” Webb said. “I think they’ll understand that I’m splitting the $200,000 between them and the relief efforts in Japan. … Japan, the fans, the people and many businesses over there have supported me throughout my entire career. It’s just the least that I could do.”

Instead of paying the players, the tournament honouring the 13 tour founders donated $1 million to charity — half to The LPGA Foundation and its LPGA-USGA Girls Golf program and half to the top-10 finishers’ designated charities.

“I think we need to celebrate these ladies more than we do,” Webb said. “I wouldn’t have had the career that I’ve had and the life that I’ve had if it weren’t for those 13 women. … I think they did a fantastic job to get this tournament run as well as it was. You wouldn’t know that they had only a few months to put it together.”

Webb has 38 LPGA Tour victories, also winning the previous Phoenix event in 2009 at Papago and in 1999 at Moon Valley. She finished at 12-under 204.

“I love coming out to the desert,” Webb said.

Lincicome shot a 70, and Creamer had a 66.

Cristie Kerr was fourth at 10 under after a 69.

Calgary’s Samantha Richdale (71) led the Canadian contingent, finishing in a tie for 19th after shooting 3 under at the tourney. Alena Sharp (73) of Hamilton, Ont., followed at 2 under, good for 22nd.

Montreal’s Lisa Meldrum (74) tied for 53rd at 2-over par. Charlottetown’s Lorie Kane (73) and Jessica Sheppley (74) of Owen Sound, Ont., finished 59th at 3 over.

After opening with a 71, Webb shot a 67 on Saturday, leaving her six strokes behind second-round leader Angela Stanford.

Stanford, 12 under after opening with consecutive 66s, had three three-putt bogeys in a 75 that left her fifth at 9 under.

Webb tied Lincicome at 11 under with a 5-foot birdie putt on the par-3 14th and took the lead with a tap-in birdie on the par-5 15th.

Lincicome matched Webb at 12 under with a short birdie putt of her own on 15.

Webb made a 3-foot putt for par on the par-4 18th after leaving her approach shot in the fringe in front of the green.

Lincicome also ended up in the fringe short of the final green, but ran her chip 10 feet past the hole and missed the putt for her second bogey of the week.

“I did a lot of good things. Just one bad hole,” Lincicome said.

From the driving range, Webb was able to follow the action on No. 18 by watching a TV above a bar in a hospitality area, though there was a slight delay on broadcast.

“You don’t ever want a player to miss a putt,” Webb said.

Lincicome didn’t know she was tied for the lead.

“I never look at leaderboards,” she said. “For some strange reason, I had it in my mind that Cristie Kerr was running away with it.”

Webb knew exactly where she stood on the leaderboard.

“I’m a scoreboard watcher,” she said. “Even if I’m not on the leaderboard, I like looking at it to see what everyone is shooting.”

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