After Further Review: Ko vs. Park a classy rivalry


Each week, takes a look back at the week in golf. In this edition of After Further Review, our writers weigh in on the Lydia Ko-Inbee Park rivalry, Gerina Piller flying under the radar and Kevin Kisner's breakthrough win on the PGA Tour after so many close calls this season.

Lydia Ko and Inbee Park came into the CME Group Tour Championship so close in all the battles for the tour’s big awards that one of them could have swept all the prizes with a hot week. Given how good they both were all year, it wouldn’t have seemed fair. They both deserved to leave Tiburon Golf Club with meaningful rewards, and they got them. Ko won the Race to CME Globe’s $1 million jackpot, the Rolex Player of the Year Award and the money winning title. Park won the Vare Trophy for low scoring average. Park was ecstatic because the Vare Trophy came with the one point she needed to qualify for the LPGA Hall of Fame. One more year of “active” service and Park will be eligible for induction. Ko and Park may be developing as rivals in the women’s game, and it’s looking like it might be the classiest rivalry in sports. - Randall Mell

Following four runner-up finishes since April, Kevin Kisner began the final round at the RSM Classic with a three-stroke lead and a lot of reasons to be apprehensive.

After coming so close so many times, it would have been natural, human even, to wonder if maybe he’d missed his chance at PGA Tour greatness and to lament his poor timing and bad luck.

“He never once doubted or poor-mouthed or questioned anything. He knew how good he has to be just to be in that position, so it’s all been positives,” said John Tillery, Kisner’s swing coach.

Kisner’s time finally arrived on Sunday at Sea Island Resort, where he lapped the field by six strokes following weekend rounds of 64 - proving that persistence and patience do pay off. - Rex Hoggard

Lost in the accomplishments of Lydia Ko, Cristie Kerr and Inbee Park on Sunday at the LPGA's season-ending CME Group Tour Championship was the T-2 finish of Gerina Piller. Piller, 30, a pro since 2007, is still chasing her first LPGA victory, but based on what she has done this year, she bears watching in 2016. She had her first top-10 finish in a major - a T-9 in the Women's PGA Championship - and made the biggest putt of her life, a 12-footer to keep U.S. hopes alive in an eventual Solheim Cup victory. On Sunday she turned in her second consecutive 67 to finish one stroke behind Kerr. Keep your eyes on Piller next year - Al Tays