Mel Reid has had more ups and downs than an elevator in a skyscraper.
Just two weeks ago she had a two stroke lead in the final round of the LPGA Portland Classic only to lose the lead and the tournament. The English woman has challenged numerous times on the LPGA Tour, but had never brought home the bacon.
Clearly she's a winner, having won six times on the Women's European Tour. Today, though, things changed, and the 33-year-old bested a stellar field at the ShopRite LPGA Classic presented by Acer at the Seaview Dolce Resort in Galloway Township. There, on the Donald Ross designed Bay Course Reid closed with a stellar 67 for a 275 total and two-shot win over Jennifer Kupcho (67--277).
In recent years the event has been contested over 54 holes, but this year it was extended to 72 holes, without fans. Her 275 bested the tournament's all time 72-hole scoring record set in 1990 by Chrisa Johnson at nearby Greate Bay Country Club.
"What a feeling it took a while to get here (winner's circle) but it was worth it," said Reid after closing her final round with a birdie. "A couple weeks ago (when leading) I got quick with my swing. I wasn't going to let that happen today. Today I played within myself, and other than that hiccup bogey on 17 played very well. This is a life changer."
Reid has long been known a strong ball striker, as evidenced by her six European wins and three time participant in the Solheim Cup. But in America she hasn't been able to break through, until today.
Her outstanding six iron shot from the rough on 18, setting up a two-putt birdie, was superb.
Jennifer Song finished with a 69 and was third at 16-under-par, while Nasa Hataoka also closed with a 69 to place fourth at -14. Nelly Korda was fifth at 12-underpar, while defending champion Lexi Thompson closed with a 68 and finished in the top-20 at eight-under-par.
CHIP SHOTS: THe victory earned Reid the $195,000 first place check...Reid joins an elite group of past winners, including Karrie Webb, Anna Nordqvist, Stacy Lewis, Annika Sorenstam, Betsy King and Thompson...The LPGA moves to Newtown Square's Aronimink next week for the KPMG Women's PGA Championship.