Volunteers of America Classic Brings the Biggest Names in Golf to Texas

One week out from the 2020 U.S. Women’s Open, the best players in the sport get in a final warm-up with the LPGA tournament

By Preston Bradsher
Last year’s winner, Cheyenne Knight (Photo Credit: Chuck Burton/Getty Images)

The women’s golf world has converged on Texas for the next two weeks as the 2020 U.S. Women’s Open draws nearer. The big tournament starts next week in Houston and will run December 10-13, but before the main event kicks off the players of the LPGA have one more chance to shine.

The Volunteers of America Classic begins this afternoon at the Old American Golf Club in Colony, Texas and runs through Sunday, with a $1,750,000 total purse at stake and a field of 96 golfers participating. Like most big events this season, this tournament has been delayed due to COVID-19, and this will mark the first time it will be played so late in the year. Despite some concerns over weather and the ever-present nerves due to the pandemic, this impressive field of players is ready to polish up their skills one more time before the 75th U.S. Women’s Open.

The competition will be stiff this weekend as all the best players are out preparing for the big show. Current No. 1 in the world Jin Young Ko will be out on the links, along with 2019 women’s open champion Jeongeun Lee and all three 2020 Rolex First-Time Winners. 

Also participating is Inbee Park, current No. 5 in the Rolex Rankings and the real player to beat at this tournament in particular. She has won the Volunteers of America Classic twice already, in 2013 and 2015, making her the only player to hold multiple wins at this event. Other former winners who will be out this weekend are Sung Hyun Park, Jenny Shin, and last year’s champion Cheyenne Knight.

Knight is a native Texan, and will try to defend her title after making a splash last year as one of only two rookie players to take home a championship. Though no fans will be present, Knight will look to the hometown advantage to give her an edge this week.

Not exactly a Texas native, but a player who calls the state her home away from home, is So Yeon Ryu. She’s finally returned to the U.S. after nine months in her home country of South Korea during the pandemic, just in time for one last tournament before she takes on the U.S. Women’s Open. Though she hasn’t seen an LPGA start since February, she’s one of the winningest players on the LPGA circuit. She also recently took home another huge win in her home country with the Korea Women’s Open, where she donated her winnings to COVID-19 relief. She’ll certainly be one to beat this weekend as she makes her American return.

Fans can watch the action all weekend on the Golf Channel, the NBC Sports app, and Golfchannel.com. This weekend offers a valuable preview of the biggest tournament in the sport as we prepare for next week, so be sure to tune in!

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