Pressel comes up short, energized for summer run

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PITTSFORD, N.Y. – Morgan Pressel fell short in her bid to win the Wegmans LPGA Championship Sunday, but her strong play bodes well for her summer run at majors and making the U.S. Solheim Cup team.

After an injury-riddled year of struggles between the ropes, Pressel looks like she is back on her game, a game that gives her chances to win on the toughest setups in golf.

Pressel started Sunday’s 36-hole marathon with a two-shot lead. She ended up missing out on a playoff by a single shot, a stroke that could have come if her 40-foot putt at the 14th inthe final round had not horseshoed out after going nearly halfway into the hole. Pressel tied for third.

“How do I sum it up?” Pressel said. “I’m definitely disappointed, but it’s the first time in a long time I’ve contended, so I’m happy with the way I played as a whole.”

Pressel’s struggles began at Wegmans one year ago, when she hurt her left wrist playing so many shots out of Locust Hill’s deep rough. She was diagnosed with intersection syndrome. Though she played with her left wrist taped up all week, the wrist appeared to hold up well in a rigorous 36-hole finale.

Pressel jumped five spots on the U.S. Solheim Cup points list Sunday night with all the points she won tying for third in a major. She has five events left to crack the top eight and automatically qualify for the team. The new Rolex world rankings are out Monday. She’s No. 4 on American Solheim Cup world rankings list. She needs to be in the top two to qualify for the team off that list.

Regardless, Pressel showed U.S. captain Meg Mallon her game’s coming around. Pressel, though, said she doesn’t want to rely on a captain’s pick to make her fourth team.

“I feel like I would get heavy consideration for a pick, but I don’t want to be a pick,” Pressel said. “Beyond that, I have to give her something to want to pick me. This will move me up in the points list and hopefully put me in good position going into the rest of summer.”

Pressel’s coach, Ron Stockton, believes Pressel is just beginning to tap what she’s capable of again.

“I’m excited,” Stockton said. “I felt like she played at 75 percent of her ability, and she finished third in a major. There’s a lot left. I know she’s disappointed. She plays to win, but we’re going to keep her focused on all the good things she did.”