Jin Young Ko laid claim to her No 1 spot on the LPGA tour this weekend in Singapore as she birdied for the win at the HSBC Championship. Ko hasn’t had a round above 70 since October 2021, and this weekend was no acceptation. 

Sentosa hosted some of the top LPGA players alongside Jin Young Ko this weekend, with Minjee Lee and Jin Gee Chun both finishing two strokes behind. Though In-Gee-Chun lead heading into the final round, Ko came up from behind and secured her sixth win in her last 10 starts.

The South Korean golfer was all smiles on the 18th green as she celebrated with her caddie, David Brooker, but she is still determined to improve her game. On Sunday, she remarked, “I can do practice more in the break time. So a little bit better than last couple days.” 

Before her next appearance at the Chevron Championship (which will be March 28-April 3 at Mission Hills), Jin Young Ko will be returning to Korea for a bit of R and R. 

The Florida Swing Begins The Honda Classic last week marked the beginning of a four-tournament stretch known as the Florida Swing. The challenging setup of PGA National produced season records for bogeys and worse, scoring averages, and water balls. If you missed the tournament this weekend, we’re here to catch you up on some of our favorite moments! The Bear Trap and Tough Conditions Golf viewers who are tired of seeing players dominate courses and win tournaments with scores of -25 were certainly pleased this week. Jack Nicklaus’ design for PGA National’s treacherous 15th,16th, and 17th holes (known as the Bear Trap) brought plenty of drama and high scoring averages. But the Bear Trap isn’t the only tricky stretch of PGA National. The course is well guarded by strategically placed bunkers and water that borders more than half of the holes. Low points and bunkers around the greens are designed to collect errant approach shots, often leaving players struggling to get up and down for par. According to the PGA TOUR, this course leads the season in the following categories: Bogeys (1,308), Double Bogeys (232), Triple+ (33), average score to par (+1.3), and water balls (289). Based on these numbers, no lead was safe at the Honda Classic which ultimately became the story of the week for one young star. Daniel Berger Takes Control Daniel Berger got to an early lead by scoring a -5 (65) on Friday and Saturday’s rounds to take a five-shot lead over Sepp Straka and Shane Lowry going into Sunday. A betting man would agree that the tournament looked like it belonged to Daniel Berger as he went into the final round, but the golf Gods had different plans in mind. Daniel Berger Loses Control, Lowry Finds It Berger started Sunday’s round with two Pars, a Double Bogey, and a Bogey, which effectively erased his five-stroke lead, putting him in second place behind Lowry. After Daniel Berger’s tee shot found the bunker on the par-3 7th hole, he finally had one go his way. He holed out for birdie to regain the lead for a short time before Lowry took it back. As Berger and Lowry exchanged leads over the next few holes, Sepp Straka, Adam Svensson, and Kurt Kitayama were close behind. Here Comes Straka On the 14th hole, Straka made a long birdie putt to pass by Berger and get within one of Lowry’s (-9) lead but for only a brief moment. On the same hole, Berger holed out a wayward approach shot from behind the green for a birdie to match Straka. Straka took advantage of the Bear Trap and avoided big mistakes; completing the difficult three-hole stretch with an impressive (-1) total. On the par-five, 18th hole, a perfect approach shot to the center of the green set Straka up for an Eagle putt just as the rain clouds opened up. Want more of our take on the PGA and LPGA Tours? Check out the latest episode of Stick & Hack Reacts, released every Monday at noon.

Bailey Shelton

Bailey Shelton is the Managing Editor and Lead Graphic Designer for Stick & Hack. She graduated from Ball State University with a degree in Journalism News and Telecommunications. Aside from her work with Stick & Hack, she has been published in NUVO and St. Louis Magazine. She also recently released a short collection of personal essays called "Home".