PARADISE ISLAND, Bahamas – Hyo Joo Kim won the season-opening Pure Silk-Bahamas LPGA Classic on Sunday, relegating Stacy Lewis to yet another second-place finish.
Kim rebounded from a bogey on the 16th hole with a 9-foot birdie putt on the par-3 17th and closed with a par for a two-stroke victory over Lewis, 2015 champion Sei Young Kim and Anna Nordqvist.
Hyo Joo Kim shot a 7-under 66 at the breezy Ocean Club to finish at 18-under 274. The 20-year-old South Korean player has three LPGA Tour victories, also winning the 2014 Evian Championship and 2015 Founders Cup.
Needing an eagle to force a playoff, Lewis parred the par-5 18th for a 68. She has nine runner-up finishes in a 40-event victory drought that dates to June 2014. The 11-time tour winner has 22 career second-place finishes.
Sei Young Kim also shot a 68, and Nordqvist had a 69.
Hyo Joo Kim made three straight birdies – holing putts of 18 feet on the par-3 12th, 15 feet on the par-4 13th and 5 feet on the par-4 14th – to open a three-stroke lead. After the bogey on the difficult par-4 16th, she hit a slight draw with a 4-iron to set up the birdie putt on the 171-yard 17th.
She had four birdies on the front nine, making three in a row on Nos. 4-6 and adding another on No. 8. The nine-time Korean LPGA winner parred all three par 5s on the back nine.
The third-ranked Lewis parred the final three holes after birdieing Nos. 13-15. After missing long birdie tries on 16 and 17, she hit a 3-wood into the light rough near the right-side front bunkers on 18, flopped 8 feet past and two-putted for par.
Sei Young Kim had a double bogey on the par-4 ninth, then rallied with four back-nine birdies.
Nordqvist, tied with Charley Hull for the third-round lead, birdied the final two par 5s.
Pornanong Phatlum matched the tournament record with a 65 to tie for fifth with Paula Creamer (66) and 2013 winner Ilhee Lee (68) at 15 under. Brittany Lincicome also shot a 65 to join Hull (71) and Min Seo Kwak (67) at 14 under.
Megan Khang, playing her first event as an LPGA Tour member, bogeyed the final hole for a 60 to drop into a tie for 11th at 13 under.
Brooke Henderson carded a final-round 70 and to get to 9-under and tie for 21st. Maude-Aimee LeBlanc shot 72 Sunday and finished 7-under for a share of 31st. Alena Sharp tied for 38th a shot back at 6-under thanks to a 70.