Henderson makes move, joins Korda in ANA Inspiration lead

Tanya Simon
September 14, 2020

Brooke Henderson kept pouring in birdies as she tried to erase as much as she could from a six-shot deficit in the ANA Inspiration.

Lee, 29, had earned her spot in the three-way playoff at Mission Hills in Rancho Mirage, California, with a chip-in for eagle at the 72nd hole - her third chip-in of the round.

The 22-year-old American, who began the day one stroke ahead of Chun In-gee of South Korea and Madelene Sagstrom of Sweden, made five birdies and sank putts from 20 feet on the second and 25 feet on the third to remain bogey free across the round.

Henderson lost the lead with a double bogey on the 13th hole that almost cost her.

Lee held steady over the front nine, with birdies at the second and the sixth, the latter on a chip from off the green. Both Korda and Henderson could only manage pars in the playoff hole while Lee putted a five-footer to clinch the title.

Henderson elected to putt from off the green and sent her attempt well past the hole.

Lee hit 5-wood just over the back of the putting surface, chipped to five feet and made the victor.

Lee, who claimed the last of her three LPGA titles at the 2017 Kia Classic, had four birdies and three birdies in her one-under 71. But it almost decided the tournament.

Henderson then made a mess of the 13th and ran up a double-bogey six, while Korda steadied herself with a birdie at 14 before she parred home to ensure a place in the play-off with Lee and Henderson, who fought back from her blemish at 13 and birdie 16 and 18. She hit 5-wood through the green and under the blue bunting, allowing for a drop.

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She got up-and-down for birdie and a 69 to join the playoff.

Henderson needed a break after having to spend the final hour trying to catch up to Korda. Korda regained her touch.

Henderson drove into the right rough on the 13th and 6-iron in the wrong place - right again, with a bunker guarding the front right pin.

Korda responded with birdies at the 11, 12 and 15 - landing her approach at the 12 within three feet. But she couldn't hang on. She settled for a par and ended at 15-under.

Through it all, Lee was an afterthought until her stunning finish.

Lee's red hot wedge came to the rescue when she chipped in for birdie on 16 to pull within one of the leaders before just as quickly seeming to throw it all away with bogey at the 17th dropping her two off the pace.

The 2019 US Women's Amateur champion carded a final round 71 to tie for 15th.

Also at 8-under 208 was U.S. Women's Amateur champion Rose Zhang, who shot a 68.

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