Number Crunching 2012: Tiffany Joh
Who climbed and who dropped in 2012? Through Dec. 31, Golfweek.com takes a look at players who made significant moves up or down in the Golfweek/Sagarin Performance Index this year.
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Ranking/movement: -164 (No. 61 to No. 225)
Why the fall? Her play on the greens.
A year ago, Joh’s saving grace was her putting. She led the LPGA with a putting average of 26.75. The biggest difference in 2012? That average rose to 30.83, and she fell to No. 112 on tour. Joh calls last year’s putting phenomenal and this year’s lackluster, at best.
“Last year, I came in and I was basically playing on a conditional card at the beginning of the year,” she said. “I felt like I had nothing to lose, and it helped my play.”
With higher expectations after a year during which Joh made 12 cuts in 14 LPGA events and had three top-25 finishes, Joh struggled.
“I played a little bit more defensive this year,” she said. “I played a lot to make cuts.”
In 21 LPGA starts in 2012, Joh accomplished that only 11 times.
As for the putting stroke, the higher average isn’t a result of any changes made by Joh; she’s a player who finds something that works and sticks with it. She still practices the same way and uses the same putter. When she got off to a good start with her putter in 2011, it built confidence.
Joh’s areas of emphasis for the offseason also include full-swing mechanics. She continues to work with swing coach Chris Mayson, with whom she started lessons about 1 1/2 years ago. Joh ranked 120th on the LPGA in driving accuracy and 123rd in driving distance this season. Part of that has to do with translating practice-range success into success on the course.
“For me, until I’m really comfortable with what I’m doing,” she said, “I probably won’t be able to go out onto the course and replicate it right away.”
Joh says: “For the most part, I’m working on trying to stay positive. It’s tough. I’m not really a super-negative person outwardly, but inwardly I am.”
– Julie Williams