LPGA Rookie Class Eager to Play

By Lpga Tour MediaFebruary 17, 2003, 5:00 pm
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. ' With the first event of the LPGA Tour season just three weeks away, 24 players are especially eager to get the season started'the rookies. Not only will the tours first-year members be battling it out for the Louise Suggs Rolex Rookie of the Year award, but they also will be looking for the valuable experience that can pay dividends for their future professional careers.
The 24 rookies that compose the 2003 class are a mixture of world talent as they represent 11 different countries: Brazil, Chile, Denmark, England, France, Japan, Korea, Mexico, Norway, Spain and the United States. Christina Kim and Lorena Ochoa earned their 2003 LPGA Tour cards by finishing in the top three on the 2002 Futures Tour money list, while the remaining 22 rookies earned their cards at the LPGA Final Qualifying Tournament in October 2002.
This is the first in a series of brief snapshots of the members of the 2003 LPGA Tour rookie class; players are listed in alphabetical order.
Raquel Carriedo, Spain ' Carriedo may be listed as a rookie, but the Zaragoza, Spain, native is nothing new to the world of highly competitive golf. She has twice played for the European Solheim Cup Team (2000, 2002) and finished fourth at the 2002 U.S. Womens Open after a final-round 66. In 2001, she won the Ladies European Tour (LET) money list on the strength of three victories. Carriedo earned exempt status for the 2003 LPGA Tour after she tied for 10th at the LPGA Final Qualifying Tournament. In her spare time, she enjoys playing the piano and participating in a variety of sports.
Kimberly Freeman, United States ' A member of the LPGA Teaching and Club Professional Division Division, Freeman won the 2002 Wisconsin State Womens Open. For 2003, she is a non-exempt player after finishing tied for 42nd at the LPGA Final Qualifying Tournament. Freeman, who qualified for the tour on her ninth attempt, is as active off the golf course as she is on it. She enjoys cooking, needlepoint, deep-sea fishing and growing roses.
Candy Hannemann, Brazil ' A decorated amateur career should help Hannemann adjust quickly to competition on the Tour in 2003. A member of the Duke University womens golf team that won NCAA team championship from 1999-2002, Hannemann won the NCAA individual title in 2001. Upon turning professional, she played eight events on the Futures Tour in 2002 and finished in the top 10 on five occasions. Hannemanns status is nonexempt for 2003 after she tied for 59th at the LPGA Final Qualifying Tournament. She enjoys dancing, horseback riding and, like most 22-year-olds, a relaxing day at the beach.
Karine Icher, France ' A member of the 2002 European Solheim Cup team, Icher earned non-exempt status for the 2003 Tour after she tied for 39th at the LPGA Final Qualifying Tournament. In 2002, she won the LETs Caja Duerno Open de Espana Femenino and finished in a tie for seventh at the Evian Masters. Icher relaxes off the course by taking in a movie, hanging out with her friends or shopping.
Linda Ishii, Japan ' Born in Chiba, Japan, Ishii attended and graduated from the University of Southern California in 2000 with a degree in International Relations. Ishii posted two wins on the Futures Tour in 2002 and tied for 59th at the LPGA Final Qualifying Tournament to earn non-exempt status for the 2003 Tour. While not on the course, you might catch this movie buff at the cinema. She also has an affinity for shopping and skiing.
Angela Jerman, United States ' A Denver native who now calls Columbus, Ga., home, Jerman parlayed a successful amateur career into exempt status for the 2003 Tour after she tied for seventh at the LPGA Final Qualifying Tournament. Jerman, who is a 2002 graduate from the University of Georgia with a marketing degree, was a four-time All-SEC Team selection and a three-time American Junior Golf Association Rolex Junior All-America selection. She enjoys reading, racquetball, tennis and, of course, taking in a University of Georgia football game. At the 2002 U.S. Womens Open, Jerman earned low amateur honors when she tied for 51st place.
Jimin Kang, Korea ' Kang is one of seven Korean rookies to make her debut on the 2003 Tour. While at Arizona State University in 2002, she won the PAC-10 Championship and was a National Golf Coaches Association First-Team All-American. She turned professional in July 2002 and joined the Futures Tour, where she won the M&T Bank Loretto Futures Golf Classic. Kang qualified for the Tour on her first attempt, tying for 24th at the LPGA Final Qualifying Tournament to gain non-exempt status. Kang enjoys playing with her dog Angel, playing the flute and jogging.
Christina Kim, United States ' The youngest rookie on Tour by 15 days, Kim will not turn 19 until March 15. She may be young in age, but Kim knows a thing or two about swinging a golf club. She earned exempt status for the 2003 Tour by finishing second on the Futures Tour money list on the strength of one win and 11 additional top-10 finishes. In addition, Kim holds the United States Golf Association record for lowest 18-hole score in a USGA competition with an 8-under-par 62 in the 2001 U.S. Girls Junior Championship. Kim practices yoga and, among other things, enjoys reading, writing and studying history.
Related Links:
  • LPGA Rookies Part Two
  • LPGA Rookies Part Three
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    The Social: G.O.A.T., after G.O.A.T., after G.O.A.T.

    By Jason CrookJanuary 23, 2018, 6:00 pm

    Tom Brady compares himself to Tiger Woods, who coincidentally is returning to the PGA Tour this week, Jordan Spieth hangs out with some decent company and kids these days ruffle some feathers with their friendships.

    All that and more in this week's edition of The Social.

    Well, it’s finally Farmers Insurance Open week and Woods has been spotted practicing for his official return to the PGA Tour on Thursday.

    Some thought this day might never come after a 2017 filled with mostly downs for the 14-time major champ.

    But as he has taught the golf world time and time again, you just can't count Tiger out.

    So even as Jon Rahm attempts to overtake Dustin Johnson for No. 1 in the world this week at Torrey Pines, all eyes will be on one of the greatest we've ever seen do it, even if that guy is ranked No. 647 in the world.

    Speaking of greatness …

    There’s not many who can just offhandedly compare themselves to Tiger, but if anyone gets a pass, it’s Tom Brady.

    The 40-year-old New England Patriots quarterback led his team back to the Super Bowl for the second straight year despite playing the AFC title game with a cut on his throwing hand.

    When asked about it after the Patriots come-from-behind victory over the Jacksonville Jaguars, Brady answered, “I think it's kind of arrogant to say it bothered me when we had a pretty good game, so I wouldn't say that. It's like when Tiger Woods said, ‘That was my C game’ and he won the tournament.”

    So there you have it. A 40-year-old Brady is winning AFC Championships with his C game. Good luck, Eagles; you’re going to need it.

    Also, if for some reason you wanted an update on Justin Thomas' life, it's still awesome:

    Yeah, that's last year's PGA Tour Player of the Year hanging with Cy Young winner Cory Kluber in a suite at the Patriots game and teasing us with a possible #SB2K18 cameo.

    Curtis Strange likes his competitive golf straight up, hold the friendliness.

    This, according to Curtis Strange.

    The two-time U.S. Open champ took to Twitter during the CareerBuilder Challenge to vent his frustration regarding the constant chit-chat and friendliness between Rahm and Andrew Landry:

    This, of course, makes sense in theory. But good luck watching golf – or really any sport – from here on out. Sure there will be a few old school guys who buck the trend here and there, but for the most part, it’s really hard to share a private jet/dinners/vacations/(insert awesome thing here) with someone, and then completely turn off the friendship coming down the stretch of a big tournament.

    Damn millennials. They ruin everything.

    By now you've all seen that poor Philadelphia Eagles fan who lost his battle with a subway station pillar (from multiple angles), so instead here is a video of a man attempting to stand on an egg. Bet you can't guess how that goes.

    Tony's gonna stand on an egg

    A post shared by theCHIVE (@thechive) on

    Seriously if you haven't seen the video of that Eagles fan, here's your last chance in this column. You'll be glad you did.

    Jordan Spieth, Michael Phelps and Bryce Harper walk on to a golf course … there’s no punchline, that actually happened last week in Las Vegas.

    Was the whole thing just a big advertisement for Spieth’s new Under Armour shoe? You bet.

    But that doesn’t make the optics of three of the biggest superstar athletes on the planet teeing it up for a round any less awesome.

    Off to the next. #Spieth2 #TEAMUA

    A post shared by Under Armour Golf (@uagolf) on

    The trio has three major wins, five All Star Game appearances and 28 Olympic medals between them, and there they were over the weekend just fake laughing for the camera and driving around individual golf carts with their own personalized logos on them.

    Just guys being dudes. Nothing better than that.

    Matt Kuchar. Still good at golf. Still overly polite. This according to European Tour pro Eddie Pepperell who had the privilege of hitting on the range next to Kuuuuuch in Abu Dhabi last week.

    That image is burned into your brain forever now, thanks Eddie. From now on when you think of Kuchar you're going to think of those Sketches ads and "oopsies."

    Which, I suppose is better than a, "Did you get that?"

    Blayne Barber's caddie, Cory Gilmer, collapsed and hit his head while at a restaurant at the Sony Open and has been mostly unconscious in the neurological intensive care unit ever since.

    The outpouring of love and support from the golf community has been overwhelming on social media, and a GoFundMe page has been set up to help with the mounting medical costs for Gilmer and his family.

    Check out the link below for more info or to donate to a worthy cause:

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    Top-ranked amateur wins LAAC, earns Masters invite

    By Golf Channel DigitalJanuary 23, 2018, 5:38 pm

    Joaquin Niemann walked Augusta National Golf Club as a patron last year. He’ll be a competitor in 2018.

    Niemann, the top-ranked amateur in the world, shot 8-under 63 Tuesday at Prince of Wales Country Club in his native Santiago, Chile, to win the Latin America Amateur Championship.

    And with the title, both redemption and an invitation to the Masters Tournament.

    Full-field scores from the Latin America Amateur Championship

    Niemann finished runner-up in last year’s LAAC to fellow Chilean Toto Gana. He followed Gana around Augusta grounds, watching as his best friend played two rounds before missing the cut.

    Niemann, who was going to turn professional had he not won this week, started the final round one back of Mexico’s Alvaro Ortiz. Niemann was sluggish from the start on Tuesday, but then drove the 313-yard, par-4 eighth and made the eagle putt. That sparked a run of five birdies over his next six holes.

    Niemann was bogey-free in the final round and finished five shots clear of Ortiz, at 11 under.

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    Judges Panel, Host Announced for Wilson Golf's "Driver vs. Driver 2," Premiering This Fall on Golf Channel

    By Golf Channel Public RelationsJanuary 23, 2018, 4:15 pm

    ‘Driver vs. Driver 2 Presented by Wilson Currently in Production; Sports Broadcaster Melanie Collins Returns to Host

    Morning Drive: Driver vs. Driver 2 Judges Announced

    Golf Channel and Wilson Golf announced today the panel of judges and host for the second season of Driver vs. Driver, the innovative television series that follows aspiring golf equipment designers as they compete for the opportunity to have their driver idea or concept transformed into the next great golf driver from Wilson. The show is currently in production and will premiere this fall.

    Joining judge Tim Clarke, President of Wilson Golf, are two newcomers to the series: 9-time National Hockey League (NHL) All-Star and current NHL on NBC hockey analyst Jeremy Roenick – an avid golfer with a single digit handicap and a self-described golf equipment junkie; and PGA Professional, golf coach, equipment reviewer and social media influencer Rick Shiels.

    “Golf is a big passion of mine, and personally I enjoy learning about new equipment and concepts,” said Roenick. “To be able to see this side of the business in how equipment is developed first-hand is fascinating. Being a part of the process in reviewing driver concepts and narrowing them down to an ultimate winning driver that will be sold across the country is a tremendous honor.” 

    “Jeremy, as an avid golfer, and Rick, as a coach, equipment reviewer and golf professional, bring incredible, real world insights and different perspectives to the show and this process,” said Clarke. “I’m excited to work alongside these two judges to push the boundaries of innovation and bring a next-generation driver to golfers around the world.”

    Sports broadcaster Melanie Collins returns as the host of Driver vs. Driver 2. Currently a sideline reporter for CBS Sports’ college football and basketball coverage, Collins hosted the inaugural season in 2016 and formerly co-hosted Golf Channel’s competition series, Big Break.

    Production for Driver vs. Driver 2 began in the fall of 2017 and will continue through the summer, including this week at the PGA Merchandise Show. The series is being produced by Golf Channel, whose portfolio of original productions include interview series Feherty hosted by Emmy-nominated sports personality David Feherty, high-quality instruction shows School of Golf, Golf Channel Academy and Playing Lessons and a slate of award-winning films.

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    Tiger Tracker: Farmers Insurance Open

    By Tiger TrackerJanuary 23, 2018, 4:00 pm

    Tiger Woods is competing in a full-field event for the first time in nearly a year. We're tracking him at this week's Farmers Insurance Open. (Note: Tweets read, in order, left to right)