Natalie Blog No Mil but What a Season

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Natalie Gulbis -- Sunday, Nov. 18 -- West Palm Beach, Fla.
 
What a day! I had one of the most exciting rounds of golf today. There were 8 players left in the final round at the ADT Championship. The player who shot the lowest round of the day was crowned the champion and got a $1 million paycheck.
 
I was paired in the final group with world No. 1 Lorena Ochoa. My plan for the day was to play agressive and I thought 68 would win it. After checking the weather, conditions and pin placements I felt 68 would do it. After a slow start I found myself at even par and playing with the leader, Lorena, who was 5 under par after 9 holes. I needed to get going because she had such a fast start since I was in second place all the way back at even par. At (No.) 14 I made birdie and still was 4 shots back. I saw my first opportunity to make a move on (No.) 15 when Lorena went right off the tee and I was on the green and putting for eagle. I felt this was my golden opportunity. But quickly I three-putted for par from 30 feet and Lorena made par as well.
 
I glanced at the leaderboard. Paula Creamer and I were tied at 1 under and four shots back with three holes to play. On (No.) 16 I drove it into the fairway and Lorena hit her shot into the fairway bunker. The 16th hole is the hardest hole on the golf course and had a very tight pin on the left side of the green near the water. I wanted to put pressure on Lorena and aimed at the pin leaving my ball 10 feet from the hole. Lorena responded with a absolutely amazing fairway bunker shot to 9 feet! Wow!
 
We both ended up missing our putts on 16 and headed on to 17. This is another very hard hole. It is an island green with a pin that was tucked in the front right corner. I was first to hit and hit a great iron to 15 feet above the hole. Lorena pulled her shot to the back of the green. I made birdie and Lorena double bogeyed. This is when it really got exciting. One hole to play and I was only one shot back from Lorena!
 
On 18, I hit a good drive in the center of the fairway and Lorena hit a monster drive 30 yards past me, but in the right rough. I hit a great shot 15 feet short of the pin from 190 yards. I was excited to have a shot at birdie to possibly force a playoff with Lorena. She responded with an unbelievable shot from the rough that settled just a few feet from the hole. Game over. What a way to win a tournament! I really enjoyed playing with Lorena and to be involved in a finish like that is why I play the game of golf!
 
The $1 million went to Lorena to cap a quite remarkable season for her. She had already set a new LPGA record earning over $3 million in a single season earlier this year and now to go over $4 million in a single season on the LPGA Tour is such an accomplishment. What a spectacular year she has had. Congratulations to Lorena on her win today at the ADT Championship and for all of her success during the 2007 season.
 
For me I was excited to join my friends and parents who were screaming for me every hole this week. They all dressed in black today. I love to wear black on Sunday and they were with me every step of the way. Thank you mom, dad, Mitch, Lara, John, Dawn, Maggie and Gunars for a fun week. Your support and love made the week and event so much more enjoyable for me!
 
Thanks to the fans and the sponsor, ADT, for a great week. Thank you to Donald Trump for his hospitality this week. His course was in perfect condition and he was so kind to let the players stay at his estate. An incredible week and event. This has been a great year on the LPGA Tour and I can't wait to get back for the 2008 season. Thank you to all of the fans who support the LPGA Tour!
 
More Natalie Blogs from the ADT Championship:
  • Saturday
  • Friday
  • Thursday
     
    Related Links:
  • Everything Natalie
  • Natalie Photo Gallery
  • Natalie's Solheim Cup Blog
  • Full Coverage - ADT Championship
     
    Natalie Gulbis -- Saturday, Nov. 17 -- West Palm Beach, Fla.
     
    Another exciting day at the ADT Championship. I shot 70 and get a shot at the final 8 for a $1 million first-place check. This has been an exciting format. There were so many great TV moments and shots today. Players were making birdies and players were making mistakes.
     
    The final holes at Trump International were designed for this format. This has been so fun and exciting for players. For me I was at (No.) 14 at +1 and needed to make some birdies. I played the last 5 holes at 3-under par. Yesssss! I'm very excited to finish strong and make it to the elite 8.
     
    I am in the final pairing with Lorena Ochoa at 10 a.m. We got to pick our pairing for the first time ever. I definitely wanted to play in the last group and I'm excited that that spot was still open. I've always enjoyed playing with Lorena, and being that she's the No. 1 player in the world, I want to be paired with the person that is the No. 1 player in the world. It's going to be exciting! Everyone tune in to watch! Eight players competing for a one million dollar first-place prize. It's going to be great!
     
    More Natalie Blogs from the ADT Championship:
  • Friday
  • Thursday
     
    Related Links:
  • Everything Natalie
  • Natalie Photo Gallery
  • Natalie's Solheim Cup Blog
  • Full Coverage - ADT Championship
     
    What would you do with $1 million? Find out how the ADT field answered on LPGA.com
     
    Natalie Gulbis -- Friday, Nov. 16 -- West Palm Beach, Fla.
     
    Today was a very exciting day at the ADT Championship. The second round started with 32 players and would be cut to 16 players. I started the day at even par and in ninth place. By the end of 36 holes, 3-over was the cutline. There were 17 players at the +3 score or better which meant one thing: The first playoff of the 2007 ADT Championship.
     
    With three holes to play, I was at even par and turned my 6-iron from the center of the fairway on 16 into the left water. I would drop back in the fairway and make double. On number 17, I hit a 6-iron to 40 feet to the safe side of a very tough pin and three-putted. Now I am at 3-over and tied on the cut line. What can you do? This is golf. Everything was going nice and smooth, and now I am faced with another very difficult finishing hole at Trump International Golf Club and I need to make birdie to avoid the playoff, a par to join, and a bogey would kick me out. The 18th hole is a very long and difficult dog-leg right. You have to cross the water twice and the pin was tucked on the back-right side. I hit a great drive and was 181 yards to the hole. After the yardage, I pulled the 4-rescue and was ready to strike. Greg, my caddy, pulled me off the shot and said the wind had changed and was now straight behind our back. He was right. I grabbed the 5-iron and stuck the iron to 10 feet. Thanks, Greg! If I would have hit the orginal club, I would have hit over the green for sure and had a nearly impossible chip back. Although I missed the 10-footer, I was in the playoff.
     
    Three people for two spots. And these were not just any two players: Ai Miyazato, the most recognizable female player in Japan; and the best to ever play women's golf, Annika Sorenstam.
     
    This is a perfect example of how exciting the new playoff format is. After 36 holes, there is a playoff and the field is cut in half.
     
    We set off to the 17th hole and each hit average shots. We all had more than 30 feet to the hole to the difficult back-left pin. All three players two-putted and we headed to 18. With good drives by all the players, I was first to hit. I hit my approach to 20 feet ... Phew! Ai hit hers to about 35 feet on the fringe and Annika left herself in the short left bunker with a very difficult shot. Annika hit her bunker shot to 25 feet to the back fringe. Both Ai and I lagged our putts and two-putted. Annika missed her par putt and the playoff is over. I am excited to advance to Saturday.
     
    Tomorrow, eight players will advance to Sunday and eight will go home. Very exciting! Tune in to watch!
     
    More Natalie Blogs from the ADT Championship:
  • Thursday
     
    Related Links:
  • Everything Natalie
  • Natalie Photo Gallery
  • Natalie's Solheim Cup Blog
  • Full Coverage - ADT Championship
     
    What would you do with $1 million? Find out how the ADT field answered on LPGA.com
     
    Natalie Gulbis -- Thursday, Nov. 15 -- West Palm Beach, Fla.
     
    The ADT Championship. The event is held at Trump International, a Donald Trump course in West Palm Beach, Florida. This is a spectacular golf course. It's (in) pristine shape. The course gets better every year. This is a fun week for players. All the players stay at Donald Trump's Estate and enjoy his gracious hospitality.
     
    I just finished the first round and the pressure is building. The first two days are its own tournament. There are 32 players who are playing for 16 spots. Players have worked all season to qualify for this event so it's an honor to be here.
     
    After the first round the cut line is +2. I shot even today and the leaders are at -5. Tomorrow is a big day. The players who struggled today will be playing very aggressive, all or nothing style golf. If you are not in the top 16 after 36 holes you go home. The event makes for great (TV) and extra excitement.
     
    Hope everyone checks it out on the GOLF CHANNEL. Tomorrow everyone will see some exciting golf!
     
    Related Links:
  • Everything Natalie
  • Natalie Photo Gallery
  • Natalie's Solheim Cup Blog
  • Full Coverage - ADT Championship
     
    What would you do with $1 million? Find out how the ADT field answered on LPGA.com