There’s no missing who the history making 11-year-old is here at the U.S. Women’s Open.
Just a sixth grader from Redwood Shores, Calif., Lucy Li will have some story to tell if she’s asked to write about what she did on her summer vacation when school resumes.
When Rolex world No. 1 Stacy Lewis checked in at Pinehurst, she discovered Li’s locker is right next to hers. Actually, it’s just beneath hers. Lewis met her for the first time on the range on Monday morning.
“Seeing how little she was, the pig tails, it caught me off guard,” Lewis said.
Michelle Wie was struck at just how young Li looks.
“She looks so darn cute,” said Wie, who knows something about being a prodigy. “I don’t think I looked that cute when I was 11. She just looks so excited, so wide-eyed.”
There’s something so incongruous about cute meeting fierce here at the U.S. Women’s Open, a championship setting up as possibly one of the most brutish tests the women have ever faced, if rains don’t take the wicked mischief out of these turtleback greens.
Li didn’t just win the sectional qualifier at Half Moon Bay outside San Francisco to become the youngest player ever to qualify for the U.S. Women’s Open. She won it by seven shots. She did this shortly after winning her age division in the inaugural Drive, Chip & Putt Championship at Augusta National. She’s also the youngest player to qualify for the U.S. Women’s Amateur, pulling off that feat when she was 10.
She charmed the media Tuesday in her introductory news conference.