Lydia Ko wins POY, Inbee Park qualifies for HOF

November 22, 2015
Lydia Ko, left, and Cristie Kerr hold their trophies at the conclusion of the CME Group Tour Championship golf tournament on Sunday, Nov. 22, 2015, in Naples, Fla. (David Albers/Naples Daily News via AP)

Lydia Ko, left, and Cristie Kerr hold their trophies at the conclusion of the CME Group Tour Championship golf tournament on Sunday, Nov. 22, 2015, in Naples, Fla. (David Albers/Naples Daily News via AP)

Park Inbee, right,

Inbee Park, right, will be the second South Korean ever to be inducted into the LPGA Hall of Fame after Park Se Ri in 2007.

NAPLES, Fla. (AP) — Cristie Kerr was the player of the week. Lydia Ko was the player of the year and pocketed another $1 million bonus. Inbee Park will be among the players of all-time.

One tournament, three women celebrating.

And just as the LPGA Tour intended, the season finale was dramatic until the end.

Kerr won the season-ending CME Group Tour Championship on Sunday, taking the lead for good with a 12-foot eagle putt on the par-5 17th and soon wrapping up her 18th career victory. Her $500,000 first prize, which pushed her career earnings past $17 million, almost seemed ancillary given the stakes that Ko and Park were playing for this week.

Kerr is 38, and says she doesn’t plan on slowing down anytime soon. Ko is still just 18, and became the fourth player to go from rookie of the year one year to player of the year the next. The others on that list: Nancy Lopez, Beth Daniel and Annika Sorenstam.

Greats all, and Ko is well on her way to that same status.

Ko won the $1 million bonus for winning the Race to the CME Globe, just as she did last year. And Park wrapped up a trip to the LPGA Hall of Fame by winning the scoring title, meaning the only step that now remains between her and induction is completing her 10th season on tour next year.

Kerr shot a 4-under 68 and finished at 17-under 271, one shot better than Gerina Piller and Ha Na Jang. Lexi Thompson was fourth at 14 under.

Park was alone in sixth, good enough to beat Ko by three shots over the course of the entire season for the Vare Trophy and the 27th point she needed for her trip to the LPGA Hall.

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