Could Las Vegas’ LPGA Event Get New Date?

A new date on the calendar could be in the future for the Bank of Hope LPGA Match Play.

Players have been effusive in their bank of hope lpga tickets praise for the tournament and the layout at Shadow Creek, but the first two editions have been played the week before the U.S. Women’s Open, causing many of the top golfers to skip the event.

One of the most grueling events on the calendar for players who make it through to the weekend is not the recipe for drawing stars days before the biggest tournament on the calendar.

“It’s not at a good time in our schedule,” Stacy Lewis, Solheim Cup captain and a member of the player council, said of the Match Play event. “I wish we could get this tournament not on the front end of a major that’s on the other side of the country. That’s the biggest reason (more players) are not here.”

This 2022 version in May was missing Jin Young Ko, Nelly Korda, Lexi Thompson, Brooke Henderson and Lydia Ko, among others.

Megan Khang said the Match Play is one of her favorite events, but it was a huge decision to fly cross country to Las Vegas only to turn around and head back to the East Coast for the U.S. Women’s Open this year.

“I think if it does move, a lot more girls would come,” Khang said. “I will probably almost come every time it’s put on. That’s me personally. They’re missing out. We get to reap the rewards of coming out here.”

LPGA and MGM Resorts officials said they are open to finding the right spot on the calendar, although they pointed out next year’s U.S. Women’s Open at Pebble Beach has been pushed back to July, so that won’t be an issue.

“There are many factors involved with planning the annual LPGA Tour schedule, particularly in fitting together 30-plus events on multiple continents,” said Christina Lance, LPGA communications director. “But we are committed to finding the best possible scenario for this event.”

Lance Evans, senior vice president for sports for MGM Resorts, said they are working with the LPGA to identify dates for the 2023 tournament.

“We are confident we will find a date that will not compete with the U.S. Open,” Evans said.

Lewis said a better date will give the Las Vegas tournament the respect it has earned.

“I think the golf course deserves it; the sponsor, MGM, deserves it; Bank of Hope deserves it,” Lewis said. “We’ve got to find a better spot in the schedule for this tournament just to make sure that the field is a little bit more top heavy.”

Lewis selfishly would like to see more of the top Americans in the field in 2023 to give them some match-play experience before the Solheim Cup later in the year.

She realizes that schedules are well above her pay grade.

“It’s not my job to make the schedule,” she said. “I can encourage them all I want, but ultimately they’re going to do what’s best for them.”

Reflection Bay Am

One week after failing to qualify for the U.S. Open, Jackson Parrish got a small consolation when he won the Reflection Bay Amateur Championship over the weekend at Lake Las Vegas.

Parrish shot rounds of 71-66 to finish at 7-under 137, two shots better than Brett Sawaia. He sealed the win with a front-nine 29 on Sunday that included five birdies and an eagle.

The other divisions were no contest. Kelly Knievel won the senior division by seven shots, while Gary Carpendale posted a 12-stroke victory in the silver division.

Other winners included Trevor Cross (championship net), Jack Kalmanson (senior net) and George Yocum (silver net).

Highlights: Bank Of Hope LPGA Match Play, Day 5

Video: Highlights: Bank of Hope LPGA Match Play, Day 5 Eun-Hee Ji punches her ticket back into the U.S. Women’s Open with a win over Ayaka Furue at Shadow Creek Golf Course to secure the Bank of Hope LPGA Match-Play title.

May 29, 2022

Eun-Hee Ji punches her ticket back into the U.S. Women’s Open with a win over Ayaka Furue at Shadow Creek Golf Course to secure the Bank of Hope LPGA Match-Play title.UP NEXT

Highlights: Bank of Hope LPGA Match Play, Day 4

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Highlights: Bank of Hope LPGA Match Play, Day 2

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Ji Hits Jackpot With Winning Ticket To Pine Needles

Thousands flock to Las Vegas hoping to get lucky. Eun Hee Ji knows what a stroke of luck can do. With one swing in the final round of the JTBC Classic in 2019, Ji made a hole-in-one to take home not one, but two cars, as the ace also lifted her to the top of the leaderboard for her fourth career win.

Sunday, Lady Luck was once again on Ji’s side as she finished atop the field at the Bank of Hope Match Play presented by MGM Rewards after playing 111 holes over five days. The icing on top of that win? She earned the final spot in the field in the U.S. Women’s Open.

“I really didn’t think I’d be able to make it (to the U.S. Women’s Open). I don’t know. It’s still surreal and hasn’t sunk in. I think it’ll hit me once I go there next week,” Ji said about getting into the field. “Hopefully I can continue this week’s momentum into next week.”

Ji is the first player since 2017 to win the week prior to the U.S. Women’s Open to play her way into the field at the major championship.

Ji knew she’d have to win in Las Vegas if she wanted to get into the field at the season’s second major championship. Ji, whose last victory came in 2019 at the Hilton Grand Vacations Tournament of Champions, had struggled since the COVID break. She had just two top-10s since the Tour’s return and found herself ineligible for the U.S. Women’s Open for the first time since 2008. As the winner of the 2009 U.S. Women’s Open, Ji didn’t want to miss returning to an event that meant so much to her and her career.

“I really wanted to make it this year,” Ji said about returning to the major championship. “My rankings dropped, and I was a bit sad I couldn’t go to more tournaments earlier in the season because of COVID. But I won this this week and secured the ticket to next week. I feel good.”

Sunday, what could have been a costly mistake at the par-5 9th hole became the turning point in her match with rookie Ayaka Furue.

At No. 9, Ji turned to her caddie to get the yardage for her second shot. But the yardage she received was incorrect. When her caddie measured again, using a rangefinder, which has been permitted in competition since 2021, they determined Ji was 92 yards from the hole. Ji switched clubs and hit a 52-degree wedge which she holed for eagle. Ji won the hole and never relinquished her lead for the remainder of the afternoon. And, with that little bit of luck, Ji defeated Furuke 3&2 to punch her ticket to Pine Needles.

“That’s why I changed my club, and I just hit it what’s the number and then just goes in,” Ji said about holing out. “I’m like, so exciting.”

Ji will test her luck along with the best female golfers in the world as the U.S. Women’s Open returns to Pine Needles for a record fourth time. Yuka Saso, who will defend her title, knows a little about good fortune, too. It was with her win at The Olympic Club that the non-member at the time, earned membership onto the LPGA Tour.

The week at Pine Needles will also be one of hellos and goodbyes as the world No.2 Nelly Korda makes her return to competition for the first time since February after undergoing surgery to have a blood clot removed in her arm. And it will be a time to say farewell as Michelle Wie West, winner of the 2014 U.S. Women’s Open at nearby Pinehurst Resort, steps away from competitive golf after 14 years on the LPGA Tour.

Sometimes an intangible, like destiny, becomes the difference maker, in determining the outcome of a championship. The luck of the draw, playing early or late depending on the weather conditions, or correcting what could have been a disastrous incorrect yardage down the final stretch on a Sunday, can play a factor in identifying a champion. The best female golfers in the world have heaps of talent, but even they sometimes have to simply leave things up to fate.