Now ranked number 2 in the world, 18-year-old Canadian Brooke Henderson had a breakout moment on Sunday as she faced down Lydia Ko at the Women’s PGA Championship in dramatic fashion. Here are five things to know about this emerging LPGA champion.
1. She nabbed her first major win and her second LPGA win this weekend at the Women’s PGA Championship. Henderson has been poised for a breakthrough all year, and her play-off against Ko showed that she has what it takes to compete at the game’s very highest and most pressure-filled level. Her victory makes her the second youngest winner of a major championship and the second Canadian woman to take home a major trophy.
2. Earlier on in the 2016 Women’s PGA, Henderson’s ace on the par-3 13th hole won her a brand new Kia K900, which she promptly gifted to her older sister and caddie, Brittany. Henderson said she’s been promising her sister all year that if she were to win a car, it belonged to her. Video of Henderson’s reaction to the hole-in-one shows a calm and collected teenager walking over to collect her ball.
3. Henderson is only the third player to win on the LPGA tour before turning 18. The other two women in that trio are powerhouses Lydia Ko and Lexi Thompson. Together, they represent a vanguard of young talent in the LPGA, and any one of them could wind up with a medal in Rio this summer. Is it too early to crown a women’s Big Three?
— Brooke Henderson (@BrookeHenderson) June 13, 2016
4. She also holds another impressive youth-related record: She’s the youngest person ever to win a pro golf event. In 2012, at just 14, Henderson won on the CN Canadian Women’s Tour at Beloieil Golf Club. Two years later, she was a runner up in the U.S. Women’s Amateur.
5. She once harbored dreams of playing hockey and golf. In an interview with our Jessica Marksbury earlier this year, Henderson said as a kid she’d wanted to play hockey and golf in college. “I was pretty decent at playing nets in hockey and I really enjoyed it,” she said. “So I think it would have been cool to see if I was just a little bit better in that and see what could have happened there.”