With another LPGA Tour season comes another year for players looking to make their marks on Tour. Here are the four players poised for a breakthrough win in 2014.
Lizette Salas became an early favorite to have a breakout season in 2013 when she entered a playoff with 11-time winner Suzann Pettersen at the LPGA LOTTE Championship in Hawaii. One week prior to that event, Salas was in contention for her first professional and major win at the Kraft Nabisco Championship, teeing off eventual winner Inbee Park in the final round. She went on to tally five additional top-10 finishes and was a crucial member of the U.S. Solheim Cup Team. With her experience in high-pressure situations, it won’t be long until Salas breaks into the winner’s circle.
England’s Jodi Ewart-Shadoff posted a career-high four top-10 finishes in the 2013 season, capturing two of them in major championships. Sharing the first-round lead of the Kraft Nabisco Championship with Suzann Pettersen and Na Yeon Choi, Ewart-Shadoff remained calm throughout the week but ultimately fell to end in a tie for seventh. The U.S. Women’s Open at Sebonack proved to be a tough test for LPGA Tour members, as only three players were in the red at the end of the week, yet Ewart-Shadoff stayed near the top of the leaderboard to finish in a tie for fourth. A member of the victorious European Solheim Cup Team, Ewart-Shadoff has tasted the sweetness of triumph and will be in the hunt for her breakthrough win this year.
Sweden’s Caroline Hedwall made history at the 2013 Solheim Cup when she became the first player since the event began in 1991 to post a perfect 5-0 record. The feat seemed to ignite a flame in Hedwall, which propelled her to a tied for third place finish at the CN Canadian Women’s Open just one week later. In the next six events, she finished no higher than T20 and posted a career-best third place finish at the Sunrise LPGA Taiwan Championship. Ending the year ranked No. 14 on the season-ending money list, Hedwall will be name to lookout for this year.
Gerina Piller ended the 2013 season off on a high note with a runner-up finish at the CME Group Titleholders, finishing just one stroke behind winner Shanshan Feng. A valiant contender as a captain’s pick for the U.S. Solheim Cup Team, Piller contributed three points to the team. She produced eight top-10 finishes in 2013, yet capping off her most successful season on the LPGA Tour with a runner-up finish has her perfectly poised for a breakthrough win in 2014.