Ko off the pace in US Women's Open

Brook Henderson hails her hockey experience to develop as a golfer

Ko off the pace in US Women's Open

Lydia Ko and Brooke Henderson's budding rivalry.

They're delivering great moments earlier than any players in the history of the game. Like Ko, if she could win at CordeValle, the 18-year old Henderson would become the youngest ever Women's Open champion.

Henderson is the second youngest golfer to have won a women's major behind KO by clinching title in the KPMGA Women's PGA championship in June.

Either Ko or Henderson would become the youngest victor in US Women's Open history, breaking the age mark of just under 20 by South Korean Park In-Bee, the world number three absent this week with a left thumb injury.

Lexi Thompson is now the fourth-best player in the world and Lewis is ranked eighth, despite a 40-event victory drought, in large part to eight second-place finishes in that time (she's my pick this week).

The most promising American player, Lexi Thompson, already has seven LPGA wins banked, is ranked No. 4 in the world and she just turned 21 in February.

When the diminuitive Pak won the 1998 U.S. Women's Open at Blackwolf Run in Wisconsin at age 20, it energized an entire country about golf and inspired multiple generations of young Korean women to follow her lead.

"To say that I wasn't disappointed after KPMG, I think that would be a lie". "If I continue to be like this, since this is a very long season, I'll come up with something really great".

Whatever your reason for ignoring what is now happening in professional women's golf, I urge you to spend a week and weekend taking in two teenagers who continue to do things we've never seen before. "They were two incredible women that did fantastic things out on the golf course, and in their lives". Of course, these things can't be forced or manufactured. Henderson seems in a hurry to catch up.

She is coming off victory at last week's Portland Classic and threatens to leapfrog Ko as the LPGA Tour's points leader if successful this week. She turns 19 in September.

Henderson, who jumped to No. 2 in the world with her victory at Sahalee, is still almost six whopping points behind Ko in the world ranking average.

"I think we both play a little bit different games". "We all know how awesome talent she has, but the thing is that she has such great personality and she's super nice". However, she feels that her preparation for this week has come from just playing and knowing her game. We never thought playing on the (LPGA) Tour would be possible for us. I get it from friends, followers and radio hosts asking the question that everybody wants to hear, and even from family members at times. I mean, I'm trying to really fighting myself to get back to being as a top player.

There were several reachable par fives and Henderson felt that would be her advantage over most of the strong field which is missing injured multiple major victor Inbee Park. "So that's what I'm kind of hoping for".

Experience is Lydia Ko's most valuable weapon as the Kiwi golfer fronts for tonight's start to the US Open.

Henderson may or may not win this week but she has already provided a breath of fresh air for the LPGA Tour, not only because she is a North American against a tide of Internationals but because she carries an aggressive and attractive game and a work ethic that should see her close to the top of women's game for many years to come.

What does Ko think of Henderson?

Ko, born in Korea but raised in New Zealand and now living in Orlando, Florida, was the world's top female amateur and won two LPGA events - the Canadian Open in 2012 and '13 - before she was granted a special request to join the tour full-time at 17 (the LPGA has an age requirement of 18). But overall she's an all around player. But the thing is that she has such great personality and she's super nice.

"I gave myself a lot of opportunities for birdie".

The 18-year-old Canadian carded a four-over 76 that left her in a tied for 107th. But she goes after the ball with the swashbuckling aggressiveness of someone who's 12th in driving distance and 111th in accuracy off the tee. "She's an inspiration to all of us girls out here, and I think everyone in the world, basically".

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