NAPLES, Fla. (AP) -- The website for Stacy Lewis refers to her as the "Next Great American Golfer."
That's about as high as any American on the LPGA Tour had reason to aim. It has been 18 years since an American was LPGA player of the year, and go back one more year to find the last American to win the LPGA money list.
Even though the phrase "global golf" is now in vogue, the LPGA Tour was ahead of its time. It has been a magnet for the very best from every corner of the globe for the better part of two decades. The Americans had to contend with the power of Laura Davies, the precision of Annika Sorenstam, the athleticism of Karrie Webb and the influence of Se Ri Pak, who inspired a nation of South Korean golfers.
Who would have guessed that when Sorenstam won player of the year in 1995, she would be retired for four years before an American won the award?
And that's where Lewis comes in.
Sick of hearing that American women didn't work hard enough or were not as dedicated or simply not as good, Lewis set what she thought was a reasonable goal for this year. She wanted to be the top American in the women's world ranking. And when she won her second event of the year in June, she moved past Cristie Kerr to No. 3 in the world, officially making her the "Greatest American Golfer." At least for that week.