I am into the homestretch of my golf season. This week is the Kingsmill Championship in Williamsburg, Va. The last time we played here was in 2009.
I'm very excited to have Kingsmill back on the LPGA schedule. The resort course is one of my favourites because it is always in great shape and I love the lay of the land. The bunkers are placed strategically, giving each hole a definite shape.
After a disappointing missed cut at the CN Canadian Women's Open at Vancouver Golf Club, I went home to Hamilton to get ready for the CPGA Championship at Legends on the Niagara in nearby Niagara Falls, Ont.
On the flight home from Vancouver, I began to think that it was time to get a lesson from someone different. I didn't hit the ball very well at all in Vancouver and it had been months since I felt comfortable with my ball striking. Oddly enough, I was thinking that maybe it was time to go back and see my old coach from when I was a junior and amateur. I was very successful in my junior, college and amateur days.
When I got home, Dad said he saw my old coach Jeff Moore and that I should give him a call. I got a hold of him that night and booked a lesson. I drove to Niagara the next morning and played a practice round -- I wanted to see the course we'd be playing the next two days -- and headed back to Hamilton to see Jeff for a late-afternoon lesson.
It's amazing how easy of a fix it was. One little issue at setup.
My left wrist was too cupped, so I have to forward press a little bit. I need to have my left arm be an extension into the club. I'm guessing that, for the last month or so, it had been cupped and therefore not an extension of my left arm going down the shaft of the club.
And my left hip had been coming up and out of shots, which created too much spine tilt at impact. The result? A huge push or a possible hook (if I released my hands).
Jeff showed me how to feel the left hip turn out of the way at the start of the downswing. He put a shaft on the ground at a 45-degree angle to the left of my left foot and pointed the butt of the club at the ball. I had to feel my left hip turn along the shaftline. It was a great visual and, within 20 minutes or so, the ball started going dead at my target. The ball flight was more controlled, my shots were more crisp -- and I was extremely happy!
After 45 minutes, Jeff had me hitting it on a rope at every target I swung at. I felt a sense of relief driving home from my lesson.
I won the CPGA last year at Bayview Golf and Country Club in Thornhill, Ont., so I teed it up Wednesday at Legends looking to defend my title. I was a little nervous on the first tee. But they were good nerves. I just had to trust what I worked on with Jeff and let it happen.
It got easier as the opening round went on and, by the back nine, I was swinging aggressively and was totally in the trusting mode. I wasn't thinking about my swing, just feeling it and playing golf. What a concept!
I shot a 4-under par 69 to open the tournament and held a one-shot lead heading into the final round. It was nice to hit 16 greens again and feel at ease on the course about my swing.
I was a little nervous again Thursday and there was pressure put on me early from my fellow competitors, Emma Jandel and Lisa Ferraro. I calmed down after hitting a great short-sided sandshot to make birdie on the third hole. I birdied No. 4, a par 3, almost holing out a wedge.
I still had a one-shot lead through five holes and just stayed patient and in the present. I rattled in three birdies on Nos. 6-8 and, by the time the front nine ended, I had a 5-under 32 and a 5-shot lead. It was one of the best ball-striking rounds I have had all year.
The wind picked up quite a bit on the back nine, which made the last six holes a little more challenging. But I played very consistently on the back side and shot a 3-under 33 for a round of 8-under 65.
I won by 10 strokes.
It was an amazing day and victory -- and such a confidence booster heading into the last few events on the LPGA schedule.
I'm so happy that I went to see Jeff. He has set me in the right direction to finish the season strong and on a positive note.
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