Solheim Cup: Juli Inkster's final picks for the U.S. team are in

Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports

Solheim Cup: Juli Inkster's final picks for the U.S. team are in

LPGA Tour

Solheim Cup: Juli Inkster's final picks for the U.S. team are in

By

Not surprisingly, Juli Inkster went with experience to round out her 2019 U.S. team, selecting Morgan Pressel and Stacy Lewis as her two captain’s picks.

“Really both Morgan and Stacy, they kind of filled what I needed on my team,” said Inkster Monday morning on Golf Channel. “I have a lot of rookies. I have a lot of players who have played one year. I needed a little veteran leadership and I think I can, I know I can, rely on them.”

The Solheim Cup will be staged Sept. 13-15 at Gleneagles in Scotland. Only two of the 10 players who automatically qualified for the U.S. team have experience overseas (Lexi Thompson and Lizette Salas). Five players are Solheim rookies: Nelly Korda, Marina Alex, Megan Khang, Brittany Altomare and Annie Park.

Three of Inkster’s “veterans” have played only one time.

That’s where the picks stand out.

Pressel, 31, played in every Cup from 2007 to 2015 and holds an overall record of 10-7-2. Her singles record of 4-1-0 includes impressive victories over Annika Sorenstam, Anna Nordqvist and Catriona Matthew.

Pressel made a strong run at the recent AIG Women’s British Open, collecting her fourth top 10 of the season.

“I’ve been on the outside for so long,” said a pleased Pressel, who noted that she was trying to qualify for the U.S. Women’s Open while the team had a bonding session earlier this year.

Lewis, who played most of the last two years either pregnant or traveling with an infant, doesn’t have the most sterling Solheim record, 5-10-1, but she does bring a boatload of experience. The former No. 1 said she was pleasantly surprised to get Inkster’s call Sunday afternoon.

“I’ve tried to stay out of Juli’s hair the last week,” said Lewis. “I wanted her to make the decision she needed to make and not lobby for a pick.”

Familiar faces that won’t be on this year’s team include: Cristie Kerr, Michelle Wie, Paula Creamer, Brittany Lincicome, Gerina Piller, Angela Stanford and Brittany Lang.

Kerr, 41, has played on every team since 2002 and is the winningest player in U.S. history.

“If I saw any light at the end of the tunnel I probably would’ve picked her in a heartbeat,” said Inkster of Kerr, “but she understood. She handled it like a champion.”

2019 U.S. Solheim Cup team

POINTS

LEXI THOMPSON (5-2-4) – Fourth Solheim Cup for America’s best. Won three points in each of her last two appearances.

NELLY KORDA (rookie) – Wouldn’t be surprised if this rookie ended up being MVP at her first Solheim. Sister-act pairing an added bonus.

DANIELLE KANG – High-octane player was a breakout star in Des Moines, putting up three points and playing up the crowd.

LIZETTE SALAS (4-4-2) – Self-described “reborn” player nearly picked off her first major title at Woborn. Comes into Solheim on fire.

JESSICA KORDA (1-2-1) – Hard to believe it’s only her second Solheim. Not many positives to draw on from ’13 but a different player.

MARINA ALEX (rookie) – First-time winner last year in Portland left nothing to chance for this year’s team. Hasn’t finished outside the top 40 since June.

MEGAN KHANG (rookie) – Five top-10 finishes this season. Not yet a winner on the LPGA but one of the tour’s most accurate players.

BRITTANY ALTOMARE (rookie) – Flat-lined Cavalier hasn’t missed a cut this year. Mature player could pose a quiet threat.

WORLD RANKINGS

ANGEL YIN (1-1-1) – Big-hitting comedian went from outside-the-box captain’s pick to playing her way on Inkster’s team.

ANNIE PARK (rookie) – Former USC standout and 2014 Curtis Cupper collected first LPGA title last season.

CAPTAIN’S PICKS

MORGAN PRESSEL (10-7-2) – Bounced back in a mighty way after missing ’17 Solheim and finishing 90th on last year’s money list.

STACY LEWIS (5-10-1) – Has the chance to reboot her Solheim legacy at Gleneagles by successfully leading next generation.

Solheim Cup on TV

Friday, 3 a.m. – 1:30 p.m., Golf Channel

Saturday, 3 a.m. – 1:30 p.m., Golf Channel

Sunday, 6 a.m. – noon, Golf Channel

All times ET

Latest

More Golfweek
Home