U.S. Team Captain Nancy Lopez, Assistant Captain Donna Caponi and 11 members of the U.S. Solheim Cup Team will meet President Bush Friday in the Oval Office for an official photo and will present him with a framed and autographed Solheim Cup pin flag. LPGA Commissioner Carolyn Bivens, Chairwoman of the LPGA Board of Directors Rae Evans, Karsten Manufacturing Corporation Chairman and CEO John Solheim, Karsten Manufacturing Corporation Executive Vice President Allan Solheim and Louise Solheim'who, with her late husband Karsten Solheim, developed the concept and became the title sponsor of The Solheim Cup, professional golfs international match-play competition for women'will join the Team members for the presidential meeting.
John Solheim will present President Bush with a commemorative PING Solheim Cup putter. Members of the 2005 U.S. Team include Paula Creamer, Beth Daniel, Natalie Gulbis, Pat Hurst, Juli Inkster, Rosie Jones, Cristie Kerr, Christina Kim, Meg Mallon, Michele Redman and Wendy Ward. Laura Diaz will not attend, as she cannot travel due to the upcoming birth of her first child within the next two weeks.
The official White House visit caps off an exciting two days in Washington, D.C., for the Team. Yesterday, players and captains took a tour of the U.S. Senate and then attended a reception hosted in their honor by U.S. Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist, M.D. (R-TN) and U.S. Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) at the United States Capitol.
Friday morning, the U.S. Team had breakfast at the U.S. Supreme Court with Justice Sandra Day OConnor, followed by a tour of the Supreme Court. Prior to the official meeting with President Bush in the afternoon, the Team will be treated to lunch in the White House Mess.
The Solheim cup is a biennial team match-play competition featuring the best U.S.-born players from the LPGA Tour and the best European-born players from the Ladies European Tour. The 2005 Solheim Cup was held Sept. 9-11 at famed Crooked Stick Golf Club in Carmel, Ind.
Attempting to keep its untarnished record on home soil intact, the U.S. Solheim Cup Team did not disappoint the record 103,000 fans with a dominant performance in the Sunday singles matches to close out one of the closest Solheim Cups in history. Captained by the legendary Lopez, the U.S. Team won seven of 12 singles matches to take back The Solheim Cup with a three-point victory over Europe, 15-1/2 to 12-1/2. Both teams came into the final day of competition all square at eight points each. The U.S. Team leads the competition, 6-3.