Altvater: Youth prevails: Ko wins Marathon Classic, McIlroy wins British OpenWritten by Fred Altvater | | BackNine@toledofreepress.com
Teenage sensation Lydia Ko collected her second win of 2014 at the Marathon Classic in Sylvania.
Ko is ranked No. 2 in the world and is gaining on No. 1, Toledo-born Stacy Lewis.
Ko is so far ahead in the LPGA Tour Rookie of the Year race, they may as well just give her the trophy now.
Ko fired a final round 65 to best 2012 Marathon Classic winner So Yeon Ryu by one shot.
Ryu had a birdie putt at the last hole to tie, but missed wide right and had to settle for second place.
The win will put Ko over $1 million in earnings for the year. She, Lewis and Michelle Wie seem to be the leading candidates to win the $1 million bonus that will go to the winner of the Race to the CME Globe.
Lewis finished T-25 at Highland Meadows this week for only her third finish outside the Top 10 on the LPGA Tour this season.
Wie played poorly and missed the cut on Friday.
The weather cooperated in Northwest Ohio this week and the Marathon Classic was able to bring another solid LPGA Tour event to Toledo.
Meanwhile, Rory McIlroy added the third leg of a career grand slam to his resume on Sunday.
He began the final round of the British Open with a six-shot lead and fired a final round one-under-par 71 for the win.
McIlroy adds the Claret Jug to his win at the 2011 U.S. Open and the Wanamaker Trophy for winning the 2012 PGA Championship.
A host of serious competitors made a run at McIlroy on Sunday, but each came up short.
Sergio Garcia made three birdies on his first nine holes and added an eagle and two more birdies on the back nine, but a bogey at No. 15 sealed his fate. He finished tied with Rickie Fowler for runner-up at 15-under-par, two shots behind McIlroy.
For Fowler it was another high finish in a major championship this year. He finished T-5 in the Masters and has had consecutive runners-up finishes at the U.S. Open and now the Open Championship.
He may have secured his spot on Tom Watson’s Ryder Cup team that will meet Europe at Gleneagles in September.
Whatever Butch Harmon is teaching him is working.
The ageless Jim Furyk fired a final round 65 and was solo fourth.
Aussies Marc Leishman and Adam Scott finished T-5, with Charl Schwartzel and Eduardo Molinari joint seventh.
Shane Lowry, Graeme McDowell and Victor Dubuisson rounded out the top 10 at 10-under-par.
Royal Liverpool had unusually calm weather for the four days of the championship and soft conditions kept the scoring low.
McIlroy at 25 years old and Ko just 17 should be around to thrill golf fans for several years to come.
McIlroy already has three major championships and it should be just a matter of time before Ko adds her name to a women’s major championship.
Fred Altvater offers golf tips and videos at www.toledoohiogolflessons.com. Email him at BackNine@toledofree press.com or follow him on Twitter @tolohgolfr.