Matthew claims 4-shot victory at Ochoa Invite
Sunday, November 13, 2011
GUADALAJARA, Mexico — Catriona Matthew won the Lorena Ochoa Invitational on Sunday for her fourth career LPGA Tour title, closing with a 1-under 71 for a four-stroke victory in the 36-player event.
Matthew, the 42-year-old Scot whose last LPGA Tour victory came in the 2009 Women's British Open, had a 12-under 276 total at Guadalajara Country Club and earned $200,000.
“I'm absolutely delighted,” Matthew said. “I don't think it's quite sunk in yet. I got off to a good start and hung in there. I'm so exhausted at the moment, but I'm sure I will pick up after a margarita.”
She also won the Ladies European Tour's Ladies Scottish Open in August.
“This is where all the best players in the world play and to win in such a limited field with all the top players playing, it's such a boost of confidence,” Matthew said. “And even though it's tough being out here now, I have two children at home, so I feel like I've got to be playing well to justify myself being out here and not being at home with them more, so it's a bonus Christmas present now.
Anna Nordqvist and 2010 winner I.K. Kim tied for second. They each shot 71.
“She played awesome, you know,” Kim said about Matthew. “We didn't really get any closer to her, so I don't think she got much you know, any bit nervous or pressure. I think she had her own kind of momentum going, so I'm very happy for her. It was nice for her. ... What can I say? I was in contention and I got to watch Catriona play, and I've learned a lot today.”
Nordqvist had her best finish of the season.
“I'm happy. I had a great week,” the Swede said. “Things are starting to fall into place.”
Matthew began the round with a three-stroke lead.
“I think in a way it's just that much more difficult when you've got such a big lead,” Matthew said. “I didn't know whether to keep trying to go for birdies or just play for pars and see if they make birdies, and in the end I kind of did neither and just kind of messed up a couple of holes there, but luckily I had a big lead.
“In a way it's more difficult when you've got a big lead because you know it heats up at the turn and if you lose that, it's not very good, so it's more pressure.”
Tournament host Ochoa is expecting her first child next month. The 27-time LPGA Tour winner retired last year.
“Lorena is doing such good work with her foundation,” Matthew said. “You come and you think I'm not doing enough when you see all the things she does, so to have won her tournament is a special moment for me.”
Hall of Famer Juli Inkster had a 72 to tie for fourth with Ai Miyazato (71) and Hee Kyung Seo (69) at 5 under. Michelle Wie, the 2009 winner, tied for ninth at 2 under after a 71.
Top-ranked Yani Tseng shot a 72 to tie for 19th at 3 over.