Homecoming for Alison Lee

Homecoming for Alison Lee

By Jeff Babineau


Allison Lee feels right at home at Wilshire Country Club, site of this week’s J.M. Eagle L.A. Championship presented by Plastpro, and really, why shouldn’t she? 


She attended elementary school just a block or so from the club, and her grandmother still lives close by. When she attended UCLA, she visited and played often, so she is very familiar with the course and its conditioning. She expects to have a nice representation of family members and friends in her gallery when she tees it up on Thursday.


Lee enjoys playing close to home, as being in California brings her back to her roots. In her last visit to Los Angeles (FIR HILLS SERI PAK Championship) she contended and tied for third. At 29, she probably has never been more confident that her first LPGA victory is near, and why not land it in her old SoCal backyard?


“I think a lot of it has to do with confidence and momentum,” Lee said. “You know, I feel like my game has been in a good place, better place the last couple years. Something has just been able to click over the last six, seven months, making a few more putts here and there, feeling a little bit more confident and comfortable over the ball when I'm hitting approach shots, things like that.


“So it's just small things here and there that really make a big difference if you look at the big picture.”


She has not performed well in her last two starts (at Shadow Creek in Las Vegas and in Houston, at the Chevron, where she missed the cut), but therein becomes the mental test. She knows she has been playing better than her scores have shown, so the challenge becomes putting those two starts behind her, staying positive, and getting on with it.


Wilshire has her in a good mental place.


“This place is great. I feel comfortable here,” Lee said on Wednesday. “Like I said, I have performed well here in the past, so going to try and take all those positives into this week and try to do my best.”


For Lee, the season ahead is an important one for her. Coming off a season in which she finished 19th in earnings (a career-best $1.4 million), the time has come to contend more often, and to win. There are big stakes ahead of her, and she wants her time to be now.


“I want to make the Olympics, Solheim Cup team,” Lee said. “I want to win out here. I feel like there are so many things I want to do this year, not so much over the next ‘however many’ years of my career.


“These next couple months feel really important to me. I feel like I'm never going to get -- it's very possible I'll never get a chance or opportunity again with playing as well as I am and trying to make the teams, the Olympics and Solheim Cup, and trying to win.”


April 24, 2024
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