PINEHURST, N.C. -- The road Michelle Wie took to a U.S. Womens Open title was unlike any other, and suddenly insignificant. Whether this was a long time coming was the least of her cares. The biggest star in womens golf had her name on the biggest trophy. She never looked happier. "Oh my God, I cant even think straight," Wie said Sunday after a two-shot victory over Stacy Lewis to claim her first major. The final three holes at Pinehurst No. 2 were filled with ups and downs that Wie knows as well as anyone in golf. She responded with a performance worthy of the hype that had been heaped on her since she was a teenager. With a three-shot lead on the 16th hole, Wie nearly threw it all away with one poor decision, only keeping the lead by making a nervy 5-foot putt for double bogey. And right when it looked as though this would end badly, the 24-year-old from Hawaii responded with the putt of her life that made her a Womens Open champion. Facing a 25-foot birdie putt on 17 that was fast and dangerous, Wie pumped her fist when it fell, then pounded her fist twice to celebrate the moment. "That kind of emotion, that kind of pressure ... Ill think of that putt as one of the best putts Ive ever hit in my life," she said. A par on the 18th gave her an even-par 70 to beat Lewis, the No. 1 player in womens golf who made Wie earn it. Lewis made eight birdies -- the most in a final round by a male for female in the U.S. Open -- and closed with a 66. Sixteen-year-old Brooke Henderson of Smiths Falls, Ont., shot a 69 in the final round to finish in a tie for 10th place. Lewis was on the range preparing for a playoff when her caddie told her Wie made birdie on the 17th. Moments later, Lewis was on the 18th green to hug Wie. Like most players, she was perplexed why Wie would spend so much time trying to compete against the men when she still didnt have an LPGA Tour card. They are friends now and practice frequently. Lewis said she wasnt the last bit surprised that Wie delivered such a clutch moment. "I think that scene on 18, being on network TV, as many people as we had around there at Pinehurst No. 2 and Michelle Wie winning the golf tournament, I dont think you can script it any better," Lewis said. "I think its great for the game of golf. I think its even better for womens golf. Im so happy for Michelle Wie. I mean this has been such a long time coming for her." Wie had chance to win this title when she was a 15-year-old amateur at Cherry Hills, and a 16-year-old pro at Newport. The last time she was in this area, she opened with an 82 at Pine Needles in 2007 and walked off the course the next day because of injuries. She had been one of the biggest stars in womens golf since she was 13 and played in the final group of a major. Her popularity soared along with criticism when she competed against the men on the PGA Tour while still in high school and talked about wanting to play in the Masters. That seems like a lifetime ago. The 6-foot Wie is all grown up. She is a Stanford graduate, popular among pros of both genders, and now a major champion. "I cant believe this is happening," Wie said. It almost didnt. Just like her so much of her life, the path included a sharp twist no one saw coming. Wie started the final round tied with Amy Yang, took the lead when Yang made double bogey on No. 2 and didnt let anyone catch her the rest of the day. In trouble on the tough fourth hole, she got up-and-down from 135 yards with an 8-iron into 3 feet. Right when Lewis was making a big run, Wie answered by ripping a drive on the shortened par-5 10th and hitting a cut 8-iron into 10 feet for eagle and a four-shot lead. She had not made a bogey since the first hole -- and then it all nearly unravelled. From a fairway bunker on the 16th, holding a three-shot lead, she stayed aggressive and hit hybrid from the sand. "I was kind of a dummy for not laying up when I was in that situation," she said. "And it kind of bit me in the butt. But I laughed it off. Stuff like that does happen." The only time panic began to set in was when no one could find her ball. It finally was located after a three-minute search, buried in a wiregrass bush. She quickly and wisely took a penalty drop behind her in the fairway to limit the damage, chipped to about 35 feet and ran that putt some 5 feet by the hole. Miss it and she would be tied. Bent over in that table-top putting stance, she poured it in to avoid her first three-putt of the week. Smiling as she left the green, she hit 8-iron to 25 feet and delivered a putt that will surely rank among the highlights in U.S. Womens Open history. Wie finished at 2-under 278, the only player to beat par in the second week of championship golf at Pinehurst. Martin Kaymer won by eight shots last week at 9-under 271, the second-lowest score in U.S. Open history. Juli Inkster, playing her 35th and final U.S. Womens Open, closed with a 75 to tie for 15th. She received the loudest ovation of the week walking up the 18th, until Wie arrived as the winner. What a journey. "I think that without your downs, without the hardship, I dont think you appreciate the ups and much as you do," Wie said, the gleaming trophy at her side. "I think the fact that I struggled so much, the fact that I kind of went through a hard period of my life, the fact that this trophy is right next to me, it means so much more to me than it ever would have when I was 15. "I feel extremely lucky." Mamadou Sakho France Jersey
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. - Headed for a last-place finish in the Western Conference, the Edmonton Oilers are enjoying the chance to play spoilers.LAKELAND, Fla. - New Detroit Tigers second baseman Ian Kinsler doesnt mind admitting he had gotten comfortable in Texas. Until his traded to the Tigers in the off-season for slugger Prince Fielder, Kinsler had spent his entire professional career in the Texas Rangers organization. He said he had an inkling after last season that he was on the trade block. He also said he was excited about a change. With the rumours swirling, Kinsler ended up with the Tigers who needed fielding and speed. The Tigers finished last in the American League in 2013 with only 35 stolen bases, 114 behind the Rangers. New Tigers manager Brad Ausmus said he wants to run more this year. Speedy Austin Jackson led the Tigers with eight steals as the Tigers relied on their sluggers, including Fielder, to knock in runs. With the trade of Fielder, the Tigers received Kinsler, who stole 15 bases for the Rangers last year, but has stolen more than 20 bases three times. In addition to Kinsler, the Tigers added Rajai Davis from the Toronto Blue Jays. Davis stole 45 bases for the Blue Jays in 2013. Kinsler was one of several high-profile additions for the Tigers during the off-season. He isnt expected to hit with Fielders power, but his line-drive hitting might be better suited for Comerica Park, which is a haven for line drive hitters, not sluggers. Kinsler lost nearly 20 pounds in the off-season once he was informed of the trade. "I like Comerica Park and wanted to lose weight," Kinsler said after reporting to Tigers camp on Sunday. "I wanted to get faster and get back to hitting line drives. If you hit it in the gap out there, you should get at least three (bases) out of it. I have more chances to run and set up the heart of the order. I never had to lose weight in Texas. As hot as it was, it was easy over there. I had to try to add weight over there. Now I have to lose it. Im ready to go right now." Ausmus said that the additions of Kinsler and Davis change the dynamics of the lineup. Former manager Jim Leyland wasnt big on stealing bases and his recent teams tended to be cautious on the bases. Ausmus said things might be diffferent this season, his first as a major league manager.dddddddddddd "Kinsler and Davis bring us the opportunity to get some more stolen bases," Ausmus said. "With Jackson and Torii Hunter to go with them, we have some speed this year. It is a different team with a different personality." Tigers president and general manager Dave Dombrowski said the discussions on the Fielder-for-Kinsler trade went quickly and set the new running philosophy into motion. "We wanted more speed, but if you look at last years team, we had very few places where we could just add speed to the order," Dombrowski said. We had to find a way and the Prince trade set everything into motion. Well be faster this year." Kinsler batted .277 with 13 homers and 72 RBI for the Rangers last season, but said he was prepared for a trade. "I wanted to go to a contender," said Kinsler, who lost two World Series with the Rangers. "It is a place I feel very strongly has a chance to win a World Series. It will be a new experience and I am excited to get out of my comfort zone. I love the park, it suits me, and I can run. We have star power on this team and I worked hard to lose those pounds because I expect to do a lot of running this year." NOTES: Once again, C Victor Martinez is working as a catcher during the daily bullpen sessions. Ausmus said Martinez will see duty behind the plate this season, especially during early interleague play. Ausmus said Martinez will be limited. "Theres no way hell catch 100 games this year," Ausmus said. "Hell work, but not as much as the other catchers.". Ausmus has started a new clubhouse ritual just before opening morning practice. The players and coaches get together and talk about not only baseball, but whatever is on their minds. Some of it, Ausmus said, is just good-natured kidding around. "It gives us a chance to laugh and laugh at each other," he said. "Its all in fun and to loosen things up."... The Tigers will host their first full-squad meeting no Tuesday even though most key position players have already reported. cheap jerseys wholesale jerseys
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