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Here is the Good and the Bad for the 2015 LPGA Season!

Here is the Good and the Bad for the 2015 LPGA Season!

Here is the Good and the Bad for the 2015 LPGA Season!

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Dottie Pepper, writing for ESPN W, gives us her insight into the year that was, 2015!  There were a lot of great things that happened on the LPGA Tour.  But, according to Dottie, there are things that could have been better!  Things like poor attendance to LPGA events and the performance of the Americans. (definitely, a link here as Americans like Americans to win!)  Of course, there are such a lot of positive things happening on the LPGA Tour right now, and I for one cannot wait to see Lydia Ko and Inbee Park go head to head in 2016.  Let’s hope that some American women can step up to the plate in the coming year!

For the third consecutive year, we’ll take this time to look back at the good, bad and the ugly of the LPGA Tour’s season. And, just as last year, there’s much more good than either bad or ugly.

The Good

1. Youth movement:

Among the 31 events on the 2015 LPGA schedule, 11 were won by a player under the age of 21 at the time of her victory and nearly half (15) were won by players under 23.

2. Balance:

Cristie Kerr won twice this year, at the KIA Classic while still a 37-year-old and the season-ending CME Group Tour Championship as a 38-year-old, crossing the $17 million mark in career earnings in the process.

3. Momentum and the 2016 schedule:

Commissioner Mike Whan now has what he considers the perfect number of official events on the LPGA schedule: 33. That has increased by a whopping 10 events in five years, and total purse money has been upped by more than $20 million to a record $63.1 million in a time that many would argue the Great Recession is still not over.

North American events have increased from 15 just five years ago to what will be 23 in 2016, including a new event in Ann Arbor, Michigan, and another new tournament beginning in 2017 in Green Bay, Wisconsin. Total televised hours have nearly doubled in that same five-year span, while network weekend coverage has tripled from two to six events.

Here is the Good and the Bad for the 2015 LPGA Season!

Mandatory Credit: Marc Lebryk-USA TODAY Sports

If you thought the men had a youth movement in golf, the LPGA Tour’s champions in 2015 got younger and then some with nearly half its winners under the age of 23, including five-time champion Lydia Ko, who is only 18 — and world No. 1.

4. Drama:

The formula and format of the Race to the CME Globe is absolutely top notch with the season finale not only contested over a quality golf course at Tiburon GC in Naples, Florida, but with a points reset that rewards both season-long consistency and playing a full schedule.

The format infuses just enough drama for players to endure to finish out the season in top form, as witnessed by this weekend’s event. Lydia Ko, Inbee Park and Stacy Lewis each could have won the $1 million bonus with a win at Tiburon, but because none of them won the actual golf tournament, it brought a hard-charging Lexi Thompson into the bonus mix.

During the final round, Ko, Park and Thompson were each, at various points, projected to take home the seven-figure haul. The two biggest LPGA awards, the Rolex Player of the Year and Vare Trophy (for lowest scoring average), were also undecided until the final hole of the year with Ko taking home the first award and Park winning the second, thus giving her the final point she needed to qualify for the LPGA Hall of Fame after she completes her 10th year of membership in 2016.

To see what Dottie Pepper thinks of the good and bad things on the LPGA Tour for 2015, go here!

Source:  ESPN W  Dottie Pepper

Pictures: USA Today  Depositphotos.

Thanks for reading Here is the Good and the Bad for the 2015 LPGA Season!

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