Anna Nordqvist fired a final-round 5-under 66 and beat Brittany Altomare in a playoff to win the Evian Championship, the final major of the LPGA Tour season.
Nordqvist started her round five back of 36-hole leader Moriya Jutanugarn but overcame the deficit thanks to clutch eagles on two of the par 5s at Evian Resort Golf Club (No. 7 and 15).
Like Nordqvist, Altomare also entered Sunday’s final round five strokes off the lead. The 26-year old from Shrewbury (MA) matched Nordqvist’s 66 to get into the playoff.
“It’s really big,” said Altomare, who played her college golf at Virigina. “I had a good week in Portland (T3), and I felt good that tournament and I felt like I could now start getting some good finishes. It’s all just about finishing up your rounds or tournaments and I feel I’m starting to do that.”
Tied at 9-under par, the leaders returned to the par-4 18th, where Nordqvist defeated Altomare with a bogey in the pouring rain to win her second major.
Nordqvist, who has battled mono for much of the summer, was overcome with emotion after her putt dropped for the win.
“I love competing and I prove practicing, and staying in bed hasn’t been the most exciting,” Nordqvist said. “My grandpa was always my biggest role model. He always used to tell me to never give up, and that’s what I never did today.”
Jutanugarn posted a 1-over 72 to finish tied for third with Katherine Kirk (70) and Lydia Ko (69).
The win was Nordqvist’s second of the season, and earned her $547,500. Altmore walked away with $339,625 for her runner-up performance.
THE WINNER’S SCORECARD
FINAL TOP 10: EVIAN CHAMPIONSHIP
1 Anna Nordqvist -9
2 Brittany Altomare -9
3 Lydia Ko -8
3 Katherine Kirk -8
3 Moriya Jutanugarn -8
6 Sei Young Kim -7
6 Shanshan Feng -7
8 Jennifer Song -6
9 Mi Hyang Lee -5
10 Georgia Hall -4
10 In-Kyung Kim -4
10 Ayako Uehara -4
FINAL ROUND HIGHLIGHTS: ANNA NORDQVIST
QUOTABLE: ANNA NORDQVIST
“I just felt like I wanted to go out there today and focus on what I could do. Winning didn’t really cross my mind until I was having a great couple birdies and eagles there down the stretch.”