WITH A WIN
Sei Young Kim would become the 10th Korean player with at least 10 LPGA Tour victories, joining Inbee Park (19), Se Ri Pak (25) and Jiyai Shin (11)
With the $1.5 million winner’s check, Kim would move to $8,666,676 in career earnings and become the 31st player in LPGA Tour history to cross the $8 million threshold
With the $1.5 million winner’s check, Nelly Korda would move to $4,393,023 in career earnings and become the 85th player in LPGA Tour history to cross the $4 million threshold
Korda would become the first American to win three times in a single season since Stacy Lewis in 2014
MUSIC AND GOLF A WAY OF LIFE FOR NELLY KORDA
At any point in time, melodies and lyrics can take over the mind of Nelly Korda. They are what help her stay so calm on the course. That was clear during the third round of the CME Group Tour Championship, especially after she surrendered a double bogey on the par-4 3rd hole.
“All I was thinking was there is this line in a rap song, ‘Last night I took an L, but tonight I bounced back’ and that’s what I was thinking on the next hole,” said Korda, who went bogey-free the rest of the way to shoot 6-under 66 and sit one back of the lead at -15. “I have so many songs stuck in my head. Someone could say something in the crowd, and I’ll pick up a song from that and it’s in my head all day.”
The performance this afternoon vaulted the Bradenton, Fla., native into solo second and puts a little bit of pressure on 54-hole leader Sei Young Kim, who started the day with a two-stroke advantage. Korda is right on her way to a 12th top-10 finish this season and will head off the first tee at 10:30 a.m. ET in the final pairing tomorrow searching for a third win in 2019.
“It’s moving day, so I tried to move up the leaderboard and get closer to her,” Korda said. “She’s playing really solid golf. I’m just trying to take it shot by shot and see where it goes. I tried to tell myself to be more aggressive on the back nine. It’s so nice to have my family out here and so many people cheering me on, being in my home state.”
CAROLINE MASSON CONTINUES STRONG PLAY AS FIANCE LOOKS ON
It’s not every day on the LPGA Tour that a professional can play with her fiance watching from a front-row seat, but for Caroline Masson, it has become a trend. Her fiance Jason McDede caddies for Nelly Korda, who Masson will compete against in the final pairing of the final round of the CME Group Tour Championship.
The last time they were playing partners was three weeks ago in the final round of the Taiwan Swinging Skirts LPGA presented by CTBC, where Masson tied for second after falling to Korda in a playoff. They also were paired together for morning foursomes in the first round of the 2019 Solheim Cup, with Korda/McDede again emerging victorious.
“It was cool and special, now we’re making it a habit,” said Masson, who is solo third at -12 after a 2-under 70 on Saturday. “We have a lot of family here and they’ll be happy to watch both of us at the same time. Nelly has played great all year and this week again. I’m trying to ride the momentum. He likes to watch and is always comfortable when I play in front of him. It’ll be stress-free compared to being around him.”
SCORING AVERAGE, VARE TROPHY UPDATES
Jin Young Ko would need to record a total score of 271 (-17) or better at the CME Group Tour Championship to end the season with a scoring average below 69. Her scoring average would be 68.9877 with a 271 (-17). Ko is currently at 206 (-10) through three days of play.
After the third round, Ko remains in the lead with the lowest scoring average of the 2019 LPGA Tour season. Ko holds a 0.362 lead entering the final round. Ko has recorded three sub-par rounds this week compared to Hyo Joo Kim with two sub-par rounds.
|Player||Entering the Week||After Round 1||After Round 2||After Round 3||Difference|
|Jin Young Ko||69.052||69.077||69.076||69.038||-|
|Hyo Joo Kim||69.361||69.411||69.432||69.400||0.362|
OFFICIAL MONEY LIST SCENARIOS
Heading into the final round of the 2019 LPGA Tour season, Jin Young Ko has earned $2,714,281 and leads the Official Money List standings by $721,791. With this week’s winner receiving $1.5 million, the following eight players on the Official Money List have the chance to pass Ko, depending on Ko’s finish. Ko heads into the final round in a tie for fifth at -10.
- If Jeongeun Lee6 (-8, T16) wins the CME Group Tour Championship, she wins the money title
- Brooke Henderson (-10, T5) must win and have Jin Young Ko finish solo 4th or worse
- Minjee Lee (+4, T52) must win and have Jin Young Ko finish solo 4th or worse
- Lexi Thompson (-9, T9) must win and have Jin Young Ko finish solo 5th or worse
- Nelly Korda (-15, second) must win and have Jin Young Ko finish solo 5th or worse
- Sei Young Kim (-16, first) must win and have Jin Young Ko finish solo 24th or worse
- Hyo Joo Kim (-5, T24) must win and have Jin Young Ko finish solo 24th or worse
- Danielle Kang (-9, T9) must win and have Jin Young Ko finish solo 34th or worse
- Sung Hyun Park, who was third on the Official Money List, had the chance to pass to Ko, but she withdrew following her third round due to injury.
Rolex Rankings No. 11 Sei Young Kim (65-67-68)
- She hit 13 of 14 fairways and 18 of 18 greens, with 32 putts
- Kim is in her fifth season on the LPGA Tour; she has nine career victories, most recently at the 2019 Marathon Classic presented by Dana
- This is Kim’s 25th event of the 2019 LPGA Tour season; she has nine top-10 finishes, including victories at the LPGA MEDIHEAL Championship and the Marathon Classic presented by Dana
- She is competing in her fifth CME Group Tour Championship; her best finish is T10 in 2018
Rolex Rankings No. 3 Nelly Korda (67-68-66)
- She hit 13 of 14 fairways and 14 of 18 greens, with 25 putts
- Korda is in her third season on the LPGA Tour; she has three career victories, most recently at the 2019 Taiwan Swinging Skirts LPGA presented by CTBC
- This is Korda’s 20th event of the 2019 LPGA Tour season; she has 11 top-10 finishes, including victories at the ISPS Handa Women’s Australian Open and the Taiwan Swinging Skirts LPGA presented by CTBC
- She is competing in her third CME Group Tour Championship; she was runner-up in 2018 and tied for eighth in 2017
Rolex Rankings No. 40 Caroline Masson (68-66-70)
- She hit 12 of 14 fairways and 14 of 18 greens, with 29 putts
- Masson is in her seventh season on the LPGA Tour; she has one career victory, the 2016 Manulife LPGA Classic
- This is Masson’s 25th event of the 2019 LPGA Tour season; she has four top-10 finishes, with a best finish of T2 at the Taiwan Swinging Skirts LPGA presented by CTBC, where she lost in a playoff
- She is competing in her seventh CME Group Tour Championship; her best finish is a tie for 35th in 2017