Henderson gets another chance after qualifying in Texas
IRVING, Texas (AP) Brooke Henderson was so close to a playoff with the No. 1 player in the world just last weekend.
Then after traveling overnight, napping in an airport and then on the plane, the 17-year-old Canadian had to endure a qualifying round spread over two days because of weather, then survive a playoff just to get into the field for this week's LPGA Tour stop in North Texas.
''I thought I was out, so I was happy when I found out I had the chance,'' Henderson said. ''It was kind of crazy. I had a putt on the 72nd hole to get into a playoff and compete for my first LPGA title. And it was an amazing experience.''
Henderson is ready for another chance when play starts Thursday at Las Colinas Country Club.
Stacy Lewis is the defending champion in her home state, and like last year arrives looking for her first victory of the season.
''Well, I felt like coming into the tournament last year, I was playing well, kind of had some frustrating finishes, so I knew good golf was coming,'' Lewis said Wednesday. ''Once I kind of got over the hurdle on Sunday, the floodgates opened, and I'm hoping for that again this year. I've had some really close finishes again.''
Lewis had six runner-up finishes her previous 16 tournaments before closing with a 7-under 64 last year to finish at 16-under 268 for a six-stroke victory over Meena Lee. That was the first of her three wins in a seven-tournament stretch that included another runner-up finish. She went on to become the first American since Betsy King to sweep the Rolex Player of the Year, Vare Trophy and money list titles.
She has six top-10 finishes this season and is ranked third on the money list.
Lewis and 18-year-old Lydia Ko, the world's No. 1 player who beat Morgan Pressel in a playoff at the Swinging Skirts LPGA Classic in Daly City, California, on Sunday, didn't have to worry about qualifying for a spot in the field at North Texas.
Henderson, the young Canadian, holed a bunker shot for eagle on the par-5 14th to stay close to the lead in the final round there Sunday. She had a 25-foot birdie putt on the final hole to join the playoff, but missed on the low side. That was her second bogey in three holes to fall out of the lead for the first time since Friday morning.
Since a top-10 finish only makes a player eligible for the next tournament if she is an LPGA member, Henderson had to qualify to play this week. Henderson last year was denied a waiver to the LPGA's minimum age requirement of 18.
Henderson finished in California without a flight to Dallas, but got booked on a 1 a.m. flight that was delayed until 4 a.m. She arrived four hours before her tee time, then played only 13 holes in before storms delayed the finish of the round until Tuesday.
She is already looking forward, not back on the finish Sunday, which included a missed 18-inch putt on No. 12 that could have made a huge difference.
''After it happened I just forgot about it,'' Henderson said.