A Glimpse at the US Solheim Cup Team
A total of 35 wins, including six majors, gives this Solheim Cup Captain a reputation as a fierce competitor. Shes played on four U.S. Solheim Cup teams and has an overall record of five wins, seven losses, and one halved point (5-7-1).
Sheehans got a mixed bag of experience and youthful exuberance to work with this year, which she seems much more excited about than worried over. In fact, the first-time Captain is extremely confident that the U.S. team will regain the Cup this week. So much so that she has not and will not be preparing anything to say should the European Team win. For Sheehan, losing this year is not part of the thought process.
Boca Raton, Fla.
As Assistant Captain and an 11 time LPGA Tour winner, Geddes has been charged with helping Sheehans team regain the cup, which was lost in the 2000 matches Europe 14 - U.S. 11 at Loch Lomond in Scotland.
Santa Cruz, Calif.
Age is not an issue for this Hall of Famer. At 42, she is the second oldest member of the team and has participated in three prior matches. Inkster hit 40 and never batted an eye. This is one player that doesnt seem to know what 'past your prime' means and will give the Europeans a good fight.
Her win at this year's U.S. Womens Open re-established her as a tough competitor and marked her place as a pillar of strength on this team.
Her overall Cup record is 5-4-2.
One of many young talents on this years team, Diaz is a Cup rookie but brings a strong sense of competition to the table.
Since her rookie year on the LPGA Tour in 1999, Diaz has been much talked about as a major force in the future of womens golf. Her first win on Tour was at the 2002 Welchs/Circle K Championship and after that it seemed that the floodgates had opened. Diaz went on to record seven more top-10 finishes this season, including another win at the Corning Classic. But she is young and still misses a cut now and then.
Diaz is one of five Cup rookies.
Santa Ana, Calif.
Jones has been described as a spitfire and in Dottie Peppers absence will have the role of motivating the team. Jones played in the very first Solheim Cup, was a captains pick in 1998, and made the team again in 2000. With 12 career wins and ten top-10 finishes this season, she will be a tough competitor.
Her record is 7-5 in prior Solheim Cup appearances.
Redman has been a resident of Minneapolis and will help Sheehan with local knowledge. She has two wins, her last in 2000 at the First Union Betsy King Classic.
Its been a really good year for Redman who has amassed eight top-10 finishes including a tie for second at the Weetabix Womens British Open.
She played on the 2000 team fairing 0-2-0 but Sheehan has high hopes for her this time around.
Kerr has proven herself by transforming into a well-rounded and successful player. In the past three weeks she has recorded two top-10 finishes and one top-15. Like Diaz, Kerr recorded her first win at the Longs Drugs Challenge this season. A lot of things have come together for Kerr in 2002, including a better relationship within the LPGA Tour community.
This is Kerrs first appearance in the Solheim Cup.
Mallon is one of the more experienced team members having played on five teams. She added a win at the Bank of Montreal Canadian Womens Open this year bringing her career victories up to 14.
She has played on all but the first Solheim Cup team. Her record of 8-5-5 denotes her as a solid match play participant.
Daniel is making her sixth appearance at the Solheim Cup. With 32 victories under her belt and four top-10 finishes this season, the 45-year-old Hall of Famer has shown that she still has fight in her game.
She brings with her a wealth of experience to share with the five Cup rookies on the team and a record of 7-6-3.
San Antonio, Texas
Ward, a Cup rookie, missed the cut at the State Farm Classic but had recorded enough points during the two-year battle to make the team. She has three wins, the last of which was in 2001 at the Wendys Championship for Children at New Albany where she recorded her career-low of 62.
Ward is one of five Solheim Cup rookies.
Santa Monica, Calif.
This cup rookie owes her spot to match play maven Dottie Pepper - the only U.S. player to have participated in all six Cups - who withdrew from competition due to a lingering shoulder injury.
Klein, who was 11th in the points standing before assuming Pepper's place, has been slightly inconsistent on the course this year, although she has recorded three top-15 finishes in as many weeks and has three career victories to her credit. Her play has been sketchy at times this year and she's missed seven cuts, making her a wildcard in competition.
The 28-year-old is participating in the Cup for the first time.
Kuehne is one of five rookies and a former member of Interlachen C.C. As such, she brings with her youthful exhuberance and the ability to help Sheehan navigate the old Donald Ross design.
Her sole LPGA Tour victory was at the 1999 Corning Classic which she aggressively defended in 2000 and eventually came in second after losing a three-way, sudden-death playoff to Tour veteran Betsy King.
Sheehan will be looking to Kuehne and Kerr to lead the other rookies into battle.
Mt. Pleasant, Mich.
Robbins was Sheehans first pick and serves the roll of the laid back member of the team. She has three top-10 finishes this season, and nine career victories. Robbins was named NCAA Co-Player of the Year in 1991 along with Annika Sorenstam.
Robbins played in the last four Solheim Cups, recording 3-1 records in 1998 and 2000, which made her an easy choice as a Captains pick. Her overall performance is 8-6-2.
San Leandro, Calif.
Hurst, Sheehans second wildcard pick, made the team even after bogeying the last hole of the State Farm Classic. It was an emotional moment for the three-time LPGA Tour winner and she vowed not to let Sheehan down after hearing the good news.
This is Hursts third time on the team. She has fared well, going 3-1-0 in 1998 and 2-1-1 in 2000. This will be an opportunity for her to up her winning percentage, which already hovers near 70%.
As the team's traveling alternate, Delasin offers comforting back up for the week. Since joining the LPGA Tour in 2000, she has recorded three career victories and demonstrates incredible nerve on the golf course.
Delasin is a fighter and just what the team needs if a safety net is required.
Check out the European Team members
Full coverage of the Solheim Cup Matches
Hadwin returns to site of last year's 59
Adam Hadwin had a career season last year, one that included shooting a 59 and winning a PGA Tour event. But those two achievements didn't occur in the same week.
While Hadwin's breakthrough victory came at the Valspar Championship in March, it was at the CareerBuilder Challenge in January when he first made headlines with a third-round 59 at La Quinta Country Club. Hadwin took a lead into the final round as a result, but he ultimately couldn't keep pace with Hudson Swafford.
He went on to earn a spot at the Tour Championship, and Hadwin made his first career Presidents Cup appearance in October. Now the Canadian returns to Palm Springs, eager to improve on last year's result and hoping to earn a spot in the final group for a third straight year after a T-6 finish in 2016.
"A lot of good memories here in the desert," Hadwin told reporters. "I feel very comfortable here, very at home. Lots of Canadians, so it's always fun to play well in front of those crowds and hopefully looking forward to another good week."
Hadwin's 59 last year was somewhat overshadowed, both by the fact that he didn't win the event and that it came just one week after Justin Thomas shot a 59 en route to victory at the Sony Open. But he's still among an exclusive club of just eight players to have broken 60 in competition on Tour and he's eager to get another crack at La Quinta on Saturday.
"If I'm in the same position on 18, I'm gunning for 58 this year," Hadwin said, "not playing safe for 59."
Rahm: If I thought like Phil, I could not hit a shot
When it comes to Jon Rahm and Phil Mickelson, there are plenty of common bonds. Both starred at Arizona State, both are now repped by the same agency and Rahm's former college coach and agent, Tim Mickelson, now serves full-time as his brother's caddie.
Those commonalities mean the two men have played plenty of practice rounds together, but the roads quickly diverge when it comes to on-course behavior. Rahm is quick, fiery and decisive; Mickelson is one of the most analytical players on Tour. And as Rahm told reporters Wednesday at the CareerBuilder Challenge, those differences won't end anytime soon.
"I don't need much. 'OK, it's like 120 (yards), this shot, right," Rahm said. "And then you have Phil, it's like, 'Oh, this shot, the moisture, this going on, this is like one mile an hour wind sideways, it's going to affect it one yard. This green is soft, this trajectory. They're thinking, and I'm like, 'I'm lost.' I'm like, 'God if I do that thought process, I could not hit a golf shot.'"
The tactics may be more simplified, but Rahm can't argue with the results. While Mickelson is in the midst of a winless drought that is approaching five years, Rahm won three times around the world last year and will defend a PGA Tour title for the first time next week at Torrey Pines.
Both men are in the field this week in Palm Springs, where Mickelson will make his 2018 debut with what Rahm fully expects to be another dose of high-level analytics for the five-time major winner with his brother on the bag.
"It's funny, he gets to the green and then it's the same thing. He's very detail-oriented," Rahm said of Mickelson. "I'm there listening and I'm like, 'Man, I hope we're never paired together for anything because I can't think like this. I would not be able to play golf like that. But for me to listen to all that is really fun."
DJ changes tune on golf ball distance debate
World No. 1 Dustin Johnson is already one of the longest hitters in golf, so he's not looking for any changes to be made to golf ball technology - despite comments from him that hinted at just such a notion two months ago.
Johnson is in the Middle East this week for the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship, and he told BBC Sport Wednesday that he wouldn't be in favor of making changes to the golf ball in order to remedy some of the eye-popping distances players are hitting the ball with ever-increasing frequency.
"It's not like we are dominating golf courses," Johnson said. "When was the last time you saw someone make the game too easy? I don't really understand what all the debate is about because it doesn't matter how far it goes; it is about getting it in the hole."
Johnson's rhetorical question might be answered simply by looking back at his performance at the Sentry Tournament of Champions earlier this month, an eight-shot romp that featured a tee shot on the 433-yard 12th hole that bounded down a slope to within inches of the hole.
Johnson appeared much more willing to consider a reduced-distance ball option at the Hero World Challenge in November, when he sat next to tournament host Tiger Woods and supported Woods' notion that the ball should be addressed.
"I don't mind seeing every other professional sport, they play with one ball. All the pros play with the same ball," Johnson said. "In baseball, the guys that are bigger and stronger, they can hit a baseball a lot further than the smaller guys. ... I think there should be some kind of an advantage for guys who work on hitting it far and getting that speed that's needed, so having a ball, like the same ball that everyone plays, there's going to be, you're going to have more of an advantage."
Speaking Wednesday in Abu Dhabi, Johnson stood by the notion that regardless of whether the rules change or stay the same, he plans to have a leg up on the competition.
"If the ball is limited then it is going to limit everyone," he said. "I'm still going to hit it that much further than I guess the average Tour player."
LPGA lists April date for new LA event
The LPGA’s return to Los Angeles will come with the new Hugel-JTBC Open being played at Wilshire Country Club April 19-22, the tour announced Wednesday.
When the LPGA originally released its schedule, it listed the Los Angeles event with the site to be announced at a later date.
The Hugel-JTBC Open will feature a 144-player field and a $1.5 million purse. It expands the tour’s West Coast swing, which will now be made up of four events in California in March and April.
The LPGA last played in Los Angeles in 2005. Wilshire Country Club hosted The Office Depot in 2001, with Annika Sorenstam winning there.