Feng Wins 2017 LPGA Volvik Championship

Shanshan Feng is presented the LPGA Volvik Championship trophy by Volvik Chairman Kyung Ahn Moon. The unique ceramic tile trophy is by Ann Arbor’s Motawi Tileworks.

Feng Wins 2017 LPGA Volvik Championship

Shanshan Feng set a tournament record at -19 in winning the 2017 LPGA Volvik Championship Sunday in Ann Arbor. She was one shot clear of Minjee Lee and Sung Hyun Park.

Feng was beaming as she accepted the trophy:

I’m really, really happy that I can win this tournament because I had a very strong finish last year, but I didn’t have a great start this year because I think I gave myself a little too much pressure trying to maybe catch the World No. 1 and then actually ended up struggling.  I’m very happy that I got myself back this week and winning again, so I’m really happy.

“And especially this is my third win in the U.S. because I’m known, you know, as playing well over in Asia always, but I haven’t won many times in the U.S., so I’m very thankful.

Shanshan Feng tees off at the start of the final round of the 2017 LPGA Volvik Championship.
Shanshan Feng tees off at the start of the final round of the 2017 LPGA Volvik Championship.

Leading the tournament by one after 54, Feng had stretched her lead to four by the fifth hole on Saturday. Australia’s Minjee Lee, however, was making a run. Lee birdied 4, 5, 7, 8 and 9 to get within striking distance. By the time Feng bogeyed sixteen, Lee was just two back.

Feng, who assiduously avoids watching the scoreboard, was unaware of Lee’s run.

On 18 I didn’t feel nervous at all, I just misjudged the rough.  And then after the second chip and then my ball got on the green and I actually looked at the leaderboard because I asked my caddie, I was like ‑‑ I handed him the ball, I was like, Is it okay?  My caddie’s said, Oh, it’s fine.  Then I was like, Oh, maybe I’ve got two‑putt to win.  And I looked at the leaderboard and I was winning by two so I didn’t have pressure on the last putt.

Minjee Lee in the final round of the 2017 Volvik Championship
Minjee Lee in the final round of the 2017 Volvik Championship. Lee finished t2.

On the 72nd, Lee had a chance to force a playoff, but her approach went left of the grandstands. Leee got up and down for par, but a birdie was needed.

I saw the leaderboard walking up here so I saw it then.  I was like oh, I’m four shots behind with like two holes to go.  So just tried to play and make as many birdies as I could on the last two holes.  I made one.

I’m pretty happy with my result.  Obviously I’m going to come up a little bit short, but still, yeah, I hit it pretty solid all week and I putted pretty well all week, so no, I’m happy with my result.

Sung Hyun Park started the day four behind, and moved up the leaderboard on the strength of a bogey-free 66. The LPGA Rookie had led after 36 holes. She birdied the 18th to get just one back of eventual winner Feng.

I think all the events I played so far leading up to this event, things weren’t really going well for me. I think I lost a little bit of confidence. But playing well this week, I think I regained my confidence and I’m looking forward to playing the rest of the year.

Park was thankful for Volvik and the support of the area’s Korean community:

I think it’s really fantastic and admirable to see a Korean golf ball company is able to do an LPGA tournament in the U.S. I think it definitely helped me play better. And seeing a lot of Koreans coming out here and watch me play, cheer me on, I think that was a big help for me this week.

The final round of the 2017 LPGA Volvik Championship was moved up due to the threat of afternoon storms (and we did indeed get serious storms starting soon after the end of the round and closing ceremony). Players were grouped in threes and sent off both the front and back.

In spite of weather issues throughout the week, attendance at the second LPGA Volvik Championship seemed good. As the final groups were moving through 16, 17 and 18, spectators lined the ropes.

The view from the Tito's Vodka grandstands opposite the 18th green
The view from the Tito’s Vodka grandstands opposite the 18th green, as the final groups were playing through. The blue skies were deceptive … severe thunderstorms were on their way.

Volvik is a Korea-based golf ball manufacturer known for its brightly colored balls. Bubba Watson plays colored Volvik balls on the PGA TOUR, and is the official ball of the World Long Drive Championship. The company has seen its US sales increase steadily in recent years, as golfers (including this Golf Blogger) embrace the visibility and fun of their colored balls.

Ann Arbor native Jennifer Song finished t11, six back of the leaders. (To be fair, though, Song spent most of here formative years elsewhere. She was born in Ann Arbor and spent several elementary school years here while her father earned his Ph.D.)

Jennifer Song

The final results of the 2017 LPGA Volvik Championship are below:

1Shanshan Feng68676668-19
T2Sung Hyun Park67657266-18
T2Minjee Lee68667165-18
T4Jeong Eun Lee68686867-17
T4Lizette Salas70656769-17
T6Moriya Jutanugarn69696965-16
T6Suzann Pettersen67676969-16
8Marina Alex71696667-15
T9Cydney Clanton68677366-14
T9Nelly Korda66726868-14
T11Jennifer Song68677070-13
T11Laura Gonzalez Escall71696669-13
T11Sarah Jane Smith67687268-13
T11Chella Choi71716766-13
T11Jessica Korda72716765-13
T16Stacy Lewis65726871-12
T16Wei-Ling Hsu65727168-12
T16Lindy Duncan72676968-12
T16Sun Young Yoo68706870-12
T16Giulia Molinaro70696869-12
T21Ariya Jutanugarn72666871-11
T21Brooke Henderson71667268-11
T23Mi Hyang Lee69697169-10
T23Jane Park69726968-10
T23Carlota Ciganda72716966-10
T23Haru Nomura68697071-10
T23Emily K. Pedersen71687069-10
T28Amelia Lewis69727167-9
T28Thidapa Suwannapura72666873-9
T30Nicole Broch Larsen70716772-8
T30Jodi Ewart Shadoff68707270-8
T30Demi Runas71696872-8
T30Ally McDonald69726970-8
T34Angel Yin69727070-7
T34Brittany Lincicome67766870-7
T34Gaby Lopez69716873-7
T34Austin Ernst69687272-7
T34Anna Nordqvist71716871-7
T34Karine Icher72677270-7
T34Jenny Shin68717072-7
T41Karen Chung69736872-6
T41Su-Hyun Oh70736970-6
T41Jaye Marie Green69697173-6
T41Candie Kung73676973-6
T41Perrine Delacour69717369-6
T41Holly Clyburn69727170-6
T41Nontaya Srisawang71697270-6
T48Min Seo Kwak70736872-5
T48Charley Hull72697369-5
T48Bronte Law71707171-5
T48Jenny Coleman70677175-5
T52Sakura Yokomine72707171-4
T52Kim Kaufman69727469-4
T52Pernilla Lindberg70737071-4
T52Caroline Hedwall69737171-4
T56Olafia Kristinsdottir69717570-3
T56Maria Parra70707372-3
T56Peiyun Chien70717173-3
T56Mi Jung Hur68737470-3
T56Nasa Hataoka70717272-3
T56So Yeon Ryu72717072-3
T56Christina Kim71707371-3
T56Katherine Perry74697171-3
64Dani Holmqvist71727370-2
T65Laura Davies70717571-1
T65Ayean Cho74667473-1
T65Kelly Tan69707375-1
T65Ilhee Lee67727474-1
T65Madeleine Sheils69747074-1
T65Lexi Thompson72687275-1
T65Aditi Ashok71707373-1
T65Sherman Santiwiwatthana71727173-1
T73Lee Lopez72707472E
T73Na Yeon Choi68727573E
T75Brittany Altomare707272751
T75Cheyenne Woods727173731
T75Caroline Masson687076751
78Jackie Stoelting707375722
T79Sandra Changkija697377756
T79Katie Burnett717174786
81Belen Mozo756878769
T82Catriona Matthew7074MCMCE
T82Paula Reto7173MCMCE
T82Paula Creamer6975MCMCE
T82Mel Reid7470MCMCE
T82Laetitia Beck7272MCMCE
T82In Gee Chun7173MCMCE
T82Dana Finkelstein7272MCMCE
T82Maude-Aimee Leblanc7371MCMCE
T82Hee Young Park7371MCMCE
T82Megan Khang7470MCMCE
T82Joanna Klatten7173MCMCE
T82Amy Anderson7569MCMCE
T82Sei Young Kim7074MCMCE
T82Annie Park7371MCMCE
T96Vicky Hurst7075MCMC1
T96Beatriz Recari7273MCMC1
T96Angela Stanford7174MCMC1
T96Eun-Hee Ji7273MCMC1
T96Mo Martin7174MCMC1
T96Julieta Granada7372MCMC1
T96Becky Morgan7174MCMC1
T96Dottie Ardina7174MCMC1
T96Ryann O'Toole7273MCMC1
T96Min Lee7471MCMC1
T96Azahara Munoz7471MCMC1
T96Yani Tseng7372MCMC1
T96Madelene Sagstrom7273MCMC1
T96Tiffany Joh7372MCMC1
T96Kelly Shon7273MCMC1
T96Karrie Webb7570MCMC1
T96Mariajo Uribe7372MCMC1
T96Pavarisa Yoktuan7669MCMC1
T114Kris Tamulis7175MCMC2
T114Michelle Wie7571MCMC2
T114Mina Harigae7274MCMC2
T114Celine Herbin7175MCMC2
T114Wichanee Meechai7472MCMC2
T114Beth Allen7175MCMC2
T120Pannarat Thanapolboonyar7176MCMC3
T120Alena Sharp7770MCMC3
T120Savannah Vilaubi7473MCMC3
T120Regan De Guzman7374MCMC3
T120Therese O'Hara7572MCMC3
T120Pornanong Phatlum7572MCMC3
T120Ashleigh Buhai7176MCMC3
T120Sarah Kemp7473MCMC3
T120Marissa Steen7473MCMC3
T129Sandra Gal7573MCMC4
T129Katherine Kirk7276MCMC4
T129Sadena Parks7177MCMC4
T132Rachel Rohanna7079MCMC5
T132Morgan Pressel7475MCMC5
T132Ssu-Chia Cheng7475MCMC5
T132Ayako Uehara7475MCMC5
T132Brooke Pancake7475MCMC5
137P.K. Kongkraphan7674MCMC6
T138Juli Inkster7477MCMC7
T138Lee-Anne Pace7675MCMC7
T138Jennifer Ha7675MCMC7
141Stephanie Meadow7676MCMC8
142Britney Yada7875MCMC9
143Celine Boutier8272MCMC10
144Julie Yang7778MCMC11
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