I tuned in to the Golf Channel yesterday to catch the final round of the LPGA Kraft Nabisco Championship taking place in California. I was expecting to see these ladies crush it off the tee box, keep everything in the fairway and sinking putts with ease (not all did which makes me feel a little better when I miss putt after putt). I was expecting to see veterans Yani Tseng, Michelle Wie and Morgan Pressel at the top of the leader board. And I was looking forward to seeing the on course golf fashions – like Paula Creamer's signature pink. What I didn't expect to see was Stacy Lewis, solid as a rock going toe to toe with defending champ Yani Tseng and ultimately taking the title – after all, it was Stacy's first LPGA Tour win!
Here is a quick glimpse of Stacy and Yani as they were featured in the Prudential Rock Solid spotlight on the last round:
I was so impressed with how calm and cool Stacy Lewis played, but not nearly as impressed as I am now!! You see, after doing a little research on Stacy, I learned that she is truly one of those amazing and inspiring athletes who has defied the laws of medicine to achieve greatness!
Stacy began playing golf at age 8 and was diagnosed with scoliosis (a side to side curvature of the spine) at age 11. She had to wear a back brace 18 hours a day for 7 and a half years taking the brace off only to play golf. WOW!! When Stacy was a senior in high school she had back surgery to correct what the brace had not and was told she may not walk again, or for that matter play golf. Well, I guess she proved those doctors wrong! She went on to play golf at the University of Arkansas, winning an NCAA championship and became the #1 ranked amateur golfer before turning pro. What an inspiration!
Stacy gives back to the community in many ways, but the one organization she supports greatly is the Scoliosis Research Society – actually she is their spokesperson. Through education and public appearances, Stacy helps other young adults with scoliosis achieve their dreams in spite of their scoliosis. Visit Stacy's website for amazing photos of Stacy's back x-rays and her story.
Congratulations Stacy! You are truly an inspiration and a champion!