Nancy Lopez

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Nancy Lopez
— Golfer —
Personal information
Full name Nancy Marie Lopez
Born (1957-01-06) January 6, 1957 (age 57)
Torrance, California, U.S.
Height 5 ft 5 in (1.65 m)
Nationality  United States
Residence The Villages, Florida, U.S.
Spouse Tim Melton (1979–82)
Ray Knight (1982–2009)
Children Ashley, Erinn, Torri
Career
College University of Tulsa
(two years)
Turned professional 1977
Retired 2003, unretired 2007
Current tour(s) LPGA Tour
Professional wins 52
Number of wins by tour
LPGA Tour 48
Other 4
Best results in LPGA major championships
(Wins: 3)
Kraft Nabisco C'ship T3: 1995
LPGA Championship Won: 1978, 1985, 1989
U.S. Women's Open 2nd/T2: 1975, 1977, 1989, 1997
du Maurier Classic 2nd/T2: 1979, 1981, 1996
Women's British Open DNP
Achievements and awards
World Golf Hall of Fame 1987 (member page)
LPGA Tour
Rookie of the Year
1978
LPGA Tour
Money Winner
1978, 1979, 1985
LPGA Tour
Player of the Year
1978, 1979, 1985, 1988
LPGA Tour
Vare Trophy
1978, 1979, 1985
GWAA Female
Player of the Year
1978, 1979, 1985
Associated Press
Female Athlete of the Year
1978, 1985
LPGA William and
Mousie Powell Award
1987
Flo Hyman Memorial Award 1992
USGA Bob Jones Award 1998
Old Tom Morris Award 2000

Nancy Marie Lopez[1] (born January 6, 1957) is an American professional golfer. She became a member of the LPGA Tour in 1977 and won 48 LPGA Tour events during her LPGA career, including three major championships.

Amateur career[edit]

She won the New Mexico Women's Amateur at age 12, and the U.S. Girls' Junior in 1972 and 1974, at ages 15 and 17, respectively. Playing in the U.S. Women's Open as an 18-year-old amateur in 1975, she finished tied for second. In 1976, Lopez was named All-American and Female Athlete of the Year for her play at the University of Tulsa. She won the Association of Intercollegiate Athletics for Women (AIAW) National Championship and was a member of the U.S. Curtis Cup and World Amateur teams. She left college after her sophomore year and turned pro in 1977. That year she finished second again in the U.S. Women's Open.[2]

Professional career[edit]

In 1978, her first full season on the LPGA Tour, Lopez won nine tournaments, including at one stretch, five tournaments in a row. She appeared on the cover of Sports Illustrated, won the Vare Trophy for lowest scoring average, LPGA Rookie of the Year, LPGA Player of the Year and was named the Associated Press Female Athlete of the Year. She won another eight times in 1979. She won multiple times in each year from 1980 to 1984, although she played only half-seasons in 1983 and 1984 due to the birth of her first child.[2]

Playing full-time again in 1985, Lopez posted five wins, five seconds and five thirds, won the money title, the scoring title and the Player of the Year Award. She was also named Associate Press Female Athlete of the Year for a second time. She played only four tournaments in 1986, when her second daughter was born. But came back to win multiple times in 1987-89 - three times each in 1988 and 1989 - and once again won Player of the Year honors in 1988. Her schedule was curtailed again in the early 1990s when her third daughter was born. In 1992 she won twice. She continued to play short schedules - from 11 to 18 tournaments - through 2002, then in 2003 cut back to just a half dozen or fewer events a year.[2]

Although considered one of the greats in the history of women's golf, and the best player from the late '70s to late '80s, Lopez did not win many majors and never won the U.S. Women's Open. She finished second at the U.S. Women's Open four times, the last coming in 1997 when she became the first golfer to score in the 60s for all four rounds, yet she still lost to Alison Nicholas. Her three major championships all came at the LPGA Championship, in 1978, 1985, and 1989.[2]

Lopez was inducted into the World Golf Hall of Fame in 1987. She was a member of the United States Solheim Cup team in 1990 and was captain of the team in 2005. She retired from regular tournament play in 2002, and then attempted a return in 2007 and 2008. In her return season, she played six tournaments, failed to make the cut in any of the tournaments and only broke 80 in three of the 12 rounds.[2] In 2008 she played in three events, with a low score of 76, never making the cut.

Lopez is the only woman to win LPGA Rookie of the Year, Player of the Year, and the Vare Trophy in the same season (1978). Her company, Nancy Lopez Golf, makes a full line of women's clubs and accessories. She also does occasional television commentary.

Personal[edit]

Lopez was married to former Major League All-Star baseball player Ray Knight for 27 years, from 1982 to 2009. They have three daughters. She was previously married for three years to sportscaster Tim Melton.[3] She currently resides in The Villages, Florida[4] where she hosts an annual golf tournament to benefit the charity AIM (Adventures in Movement), an organization that helps mentally challenged, visually impaired, hearing impaired, physically handicapped and other children and adults with special needs. She has hosted the tournament since 1981 and also serves as a National Ambassador with AIM, along with Baseball Hall of Famer Joe Morgan.[5]

Amateur wins[edit]

this list may be incomplete

Professional wins[edit]

LPGA Tour wins (48)[edit]

Legend
LPGA Tour major championships (3)
Other LPGA Tour (45)
No. Date Tournament Winning score Margin of
victory
Runner(s)-up
1 Feb 26, 1978 Bent Tree Classic +1 (71-72-73-73=289) 1 stroke United States Jo Ann Washam
2 Mar 12, 1978 Sunstar Classic −3 (72-72-70-71=285) 1 stroke United States Debbie Austin, United States Debbie Massey
3 May 14, 1978 Greater Baltimore Classic −7 (67-73-72=212) 3 strokes United States Donna Caponi
4 May 21, 1978 Coca-Cola Classic −3 (69-71-70=210) Playoff United States JoAnne Carner
5 May 29, 1978 Golden Lights Championship −11 (67-72-73-65=277) 1 stroke United States Jane Blalock
6 Jun 11, 1978 LPGA Championship −13 (71-65-69-70=275) 6 strokes United States Amy Alcott
7 Jun 18, 1978 Bankers Trust Classic −5 (72-73-69=214) 2 strokes United States Jane Blalock, United States Debbie Massey
8 Aug 6, 1978 Colgate European Open −7 (73-71-72-73=289) 3 strokes United States JoAnne Carner, United States Mary Dwyer,
South Africa Sally Little
9 Nov 12, 1978 Colgate Far East Open E (75-69-72=216) 2 strokes Argentina Silvia Bertolaccini, United States Kathy Whitworth
10 Mar 11, 1979 Sunstar Classic −8 (70-71-70-69=280) 1 stroke United States Hollis Stacy
11 Mar 25, 1979 Sahara National Pro-Am −16 (72-67-66-69=274) 2 strokes United States Donna Caponi
12 May 6, 1979 Women's International −6 (72-71-71-68=282) 3 strokes United States Donna White
13 May 20, 1979 Coca-Cola Classic −3 (73-70-73=216) Playoff United States Bonnie Bryant, United States Hollis Stacy,
United States Jo Ann Washam, United States Mickey Wright
14 Jun 3, 1979 Golden Lights Championship −8 (67-70-73-70=280) 4 strokes United States Pat Bradley
15 Jun 24, 1979 Lady Keystone Open −4 (72-68-72=212) 2 strokes South Africa Sally Little, United States Kathy Whitworth
16 Aug 5, 1979 Colgate European Open −6 (68-69-70-75=282) 4 strokes United States Joyce Kazmierski
17 Sep 30, 1979 Mary Kay Classic −14 (71-66-67-70=274) 2 strokes Canada Sandra Post
18 Mar 30, 1980 Women's Kemper Open E (72-66-77-69=284) 2 strokes United States Debbie Massey, United States Jo Ann Washam
19 Jun 29, 1980 The Sarah Coventry −9 (73-67-72-71=283) 1 stroke United States Pat Bradley
20 Sep 1, 1980 Rail Charity Golf Classic −13 (65-71-71-68=275) 1 stroke United States JoAnne Carner
21 Mar 8, 1981 Arizona Copper Classic −14 (70-72-68-68=278) 4 strokes United States Pat Bradley
22 Apr 5, 1981 Colgate-Dinah Shore −11 (71-73-69-64=277) 2 strokes United States Carolyn Hill
23 Jun 28, 1981 The Sarah Coventry −3 (74-69-71-71=285) 2 strokes United States Pat Bradley
24 Mar 21, 1982 J&B Scotch Pro-Am −5 (70-67-69-73=279) 5 strokes United States Sandra Haynie
25 Nov 7, 1982 Mazda Japan Classic −9 (66-70-71=207) 6 strokes United States Amy Alcott
26 Feb 6, 1983 Elizabeth Arden Classic −3 (71-71-70-73=285) 1 stroke United States Pat Bradley, United States JoAnne Carner,
United States Stephanie Farwig, United States Betsy King
27 Apr 10, 1983 J&B Scotch Pro-Am −6 (71-69-69-74=283) 1 stroke United States Laura Baugh
28 Mar 4, 1984 Uniden LPGA Invitational E (70-74-66-74=284) 3 strokes United States Pat Bradley
29 Aug 19, 1984 Chevrolet World Championship of Women's Golf −7 (69-74-65-73=281) 1 stroke United States JoAnne Carner
30 May 19, 1985 Chrysler-Plymouth Classic −9 (69-69-72=210) 3 strokes United States Pat Bradley
31 Jun 7, 1985 LPGA Championship −15 (65-71-72-65=273) 8 strokes United States Alice Miller
32 Jul 7, 1985 Mazda Hall of Fame Championship −7 (71-70-72-68=281) 3 strokes United States JoAnne Carner, United States Allison Finney
33 Aug 11, 1985 Henredon Classic −20 (66-67-69-66=268) 10 strokes United States Val Skinner
34 Sep 8, 1985 Portland Ping Championship −1 (69-76-70=215) Playoff United States Lori Garbacz
35 Feb 8, 1987 Sarasota Classic −7 (73-66-68-74=281) 3 strokes United States Kathy Guadagnino, France Anne Marie Palli
36 Sep 13, 1987 Cellular One-Ping Golf Championship −6 (72-67-71=210) 1 stroke United States Kelly Leadbetter, United States Muffin Spencer-Devlin,
Australia Jan Stephenson
37 Feb 7, 1988 Mazda Classic −5 (69-68-71-75=283) 2 strokes Spain Marta Figueras-Dotti
38 Apr 17, 1988 AI Star/Centinela Hospital Classic −6 (71-72-67=210) Playoff Spain Marta Figueras-Dotti
39 May 15, 1988 Chrysler-Plymouth Classic −12 (68-70-66=204) 8 strokes Australia Jan Stephenson
40 May 21, 1989 Mazda LPGA Championship −14 (71-69-68-66=274) 3 strokes Japan Ayako Okamoto
41 Jul 30, 1989 Atlantic City Classic −10 (67-70-69=206) 1 stroke United States Christa Johnson, United States Vicki Fergon
42 Sep 24, 1989 Nippon Travel-MBS Classic −11 (73-69-65-70=277) 2 strokes United States Alice Ritzman, Scotland Pamela Wright
43 Sep 23, 1990 MBS LPGA Classic −7 (69-70-74-68=281) Playoff United States Cathy Gerring
44 May 5, 1991 Sara Lee Classic −10 (65-70-71=206) 2 strokes United States Kris Monaghan
45 Sep 7, 1992 Rail Charity Golf Classic −17 (67-68-64=199) Playoff England Laura Davies
46 Sep 13, 1992 Ping-Cellular One LPGA Golf Championship −7 (70-70-69=209) Playoff Australia Jane Crafter
47 Jul 11, 1993 Youngstown-Warren LPGA Classic −13 (68-68-67=203) Playoff United States Deb Richard
48 Apr 27, 1997 Chick-fil-A Charity Championship −7 (71-66=137) 2 strokes United States Tina Barrett, United States Deb Richard,
Australia Karrie Webb

Note: Lopez won the Colgate-Dinah Shore (now known as the Kraft Nabisco Championship) before it became a major championship.

LPGA Tour playoff record (8–7)

No. Year Tournament Opponent(s) Result
1 1978 Kathryn Crosby/Honda Civic Classic South Africa Sally Little Lost to par on first extra hole
2 1978 Coca-Cola Classic United States JoAnne Carner Won with par on first extra hole
3 1978 Mizuno-Japan Classic Japan Michiko Okada, Taiwan Ai-Yu Tu Okada won with birdie on fifth extra hole
Tu eliminated with birdie on second hole
4 1979 Women's Kemper Open United States Donna Caponi, United States JoAnne Carner,
Japan Chako Higuchi, Australia Jan Stephenson
Carner won with par on second extra hole
Caponi, Lopez, and Stephenson eliminated with par on first hole
5 1979 Coca-Cola Classic United States Bonnie Bryant, United States Hollis Stacy,
United States Jo Ann Washam, United States Mickey Wright
Won with birdie on second extra hole
Bryant, Stacy, and Washam eliminated with birdie on first hole
6 1980 Mary Kay Classic United States Jerilyn Britz Lost to birdie on second extra hole
7 1985 Portland Ping Championship United States Lori Garbacz Won with birdie on third extra hole
8 1988 AI Star/Centinela Hospital Classic Spain Marta Figueras-Dotti Won with par on second extra hole
9 1988 Crestar Classic United States Juli Inkster, United States Rosie Jones,
United States Betsy King
Inkster won with eagle on first extra hole
10 1988 Rochester International Taiwan Mei-Chi Cheng, United States Patty Sheehan Cheng won with birdie on second extra hole
Sheehan eliminated with par on first hole
11 1990 MBS LPGA Classic United States Cathy Gerring Won with birdie on first extra hole
12 1992 Rail Charity Classic England Laura Davies Won with par on first extra hole
13 1992 Ping-Cellular One LPGA Golf Championship Australia Jane Crafter Won with par on second extra hole
14 1993 Youngstown-Warren LPGA Classic United States Deb Richard Won with birdie on first extra hole
15 1998 Sara Lee Classic United States Donna Andrews, Peru Jenny Lidback,
United States Barb Mucha
Mucha won with birdie on second extra hole

Other wins[edit]

Major championships[edit]

Wins (3)[edit]

Year Championship Winning score Margin Runner-up
1978 LPGA Championship −13 (71-65-69-70=275) 6 strokes United States Amy Alcott
1985 LPGA Championship −15 (65-71-72-65=273) 8 strokes United States Alice Miller
1989 Mazda LPGA Championship −14 (71-69-68-66=274) 3 strokes Japan Ayako Okamoto

Results timeline[edit]

Tournament 1974 1975 1976 1977 1978 1979 1980
LPGA Championship DNP DNP DNP DNP 1 T10 T19
U.S. Women's Open T18 T2LA CUT 2 T9 T11 T7
du Maurier Classic ... ... ... ... ... 2 T6
Tournament 1981 1982 1983 1984 1985 1986 1987 1988 1989 1990
Kraft Nabisco Championship ... ... T6 T16 T11 DNP T33 T5 T18 CUT
LPGA Championship T5 T35 T21 T14 1 DNP T28 T24 1 T14
U.S. Women's Open WD T7 DNP T35 T4 DNP T21 T12 2 T14
du Maurier Classic T2 T9 WD T8 DNP DNP T21 T45 9 DNP
Tournament 1991 1992 1993 1994 1995 1996 1997 1998 1999 2000
Kraft Nabisco Championship T30 CUT T8 T9 T3 T15 T23 T13 T21 T43
LPGA Championship DNP T18 T25 WD T18 T18 T37 T44 WD T65
U.S. Women's Open DNP T16 T7 T35 T28 CUT 2 CUT CUT T46
du Maurier Classic DNP DNP DNP T22 DNP T2 DNP T27 DNP DNP
Tournament 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010
Kraft Nabisco Championship T63 CUT CUT WD CUT DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP
LPGA Championship CUT CUT CUT CUT DNP DNP CUT DNP DNP CUT
U.S. Women's Open CUT CUT DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP
Women's British Open DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP DNP

^ The Women's British Open replaced the du Maurier Classic as an LPGA major in 2001.
LA = Low Amateur
DNP = did not play.
CUT = missed the half=way cut.
"T" = tied
WD = withdrew
Green background for a win. Yellow background for a top-10 finish.

Team appearances[edit]

Amateur

Professional

  • Solheim Cup (representing the United States): 1990 (winners)
  • Handa Cup (representing the United States): 2011 (winners), 2012 (tie, Cup retained), 2013

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Hollis Stacy Withstands The Pressure". Lebanon Daily News (Lebanon, Pennsylvania). July 25, 1977. p. 19. Retrieved July 27, 2011. "Next to her was 20-year-old Nancy Marie Lopez..." 
  2. ^ a b c d e Nancy Lopez at about.com
  3. ^ Lemon, Richard (April 25, 1983). "On the Beach No More, Nancy Lopez and Ray Knight Score a Tie for Golf and Baseball". People 19 (16). Retrieved June 24, 2013. 
  4. ^ Glenn, Rhonda (December 7, 2012). "Catching Up With ... Nancy Lopez: 40 years after winning her first U.S. Girls' Junior, Hall of Famer is busy on and off course". USGA. Retrieved June 24, 2013. 
  5. ^ "AIM Ambassadors". Retrieved June 24, 2013. 

Further reading[edit]

  • Katherine M. Jamieson. "Reading Nancy Lopez: Decoding Representations of Race, Class, and Sexuality"
  • Baca Zinn, Maxine and Bonnie Thornton Dill. "Theorizing Difference from Multiracial Feminism." Feminist Theory Reader. Carole R. McCann & Seung-Kyung Kim, eds. New York, NY: Routledge Press, 2003.

External links[edit]

Awards and achievements
Preceded by
Diana Golden-Brosnihan
Flo Hyman Memorial Award
1992
Succeeded by
Lynette Woodard