HOUSTON (January 5, 2016) â Even with the emergence of a new year, the old one was so good for a couple of kid golfers that it is still paying dividends.
Victorious five times each in 2015, Jordan Spieth, 22, and Lydia Ko, 18, were named Players of the Year by the Golf Writers Association of America.
âItâs a great way to end a very special year,â Spieth said of winning the Male Player of the Year presented by ISPS HANDA.
Previously he had been named player of the year by both the PGA TOUR and PGA of America in recognition of a season in which he won the Masters and U.S. Open, captured the TOUR Championship and overall FedEx Cup title, and piled up more than $12m in prize money.
âIt is an honor to win the Golf Writers Association of America Male Player of the Year award and have my name listed with so many of golf’s greatest players,â Spieth said.
In winning at Augusta, Spieth matched Tiger Woodsâ record 270 score and he came within a shot of a playoff at the Open Championship and a possible third straight major. Spieth finished second to Jason Day in the PGA Championship, but easily outdistanced the Aussie with 98 percent of the 205 GWAA votes.
Ko, who gathered 56 percent of the vote to win over Inbee Park, had one major title among her five wins, but it came in dramatic fashion. With a closing 63, Ko stormed to a five-stroke win in the Evian Championship in France, becoming the youngest women to win a major.
âI’m so honored to receive this award from the GWAA and I appreciate the recognition from the many media who cover the LPGA,â said Ko. âI am proud of what I accomplished in 2015 and I am working hard to continue achieving my goals this season.”
The New Zealander also won Rolex Player of the Year honors, as well as the season-long Race to the CME Final.
Like Spieth, Ko is ranked No. 1 in the world.
Jeff Maggert, 51, devoted his full attention to the Champions Tour for the first time and it paid off handsomely, with victories in two majors, the U.S. Senior Open and Regions Tradition, and two other tournaments. He earned 70 percent of the GWAA vote to earn Senior Player of the Year honors over Bernhard Langer.
âIâm flattered that the writers honored me,ââ Maggert said of the award. âIâm looking forward to the dinner, especially if Jordan is there. Heâs my little guyâs (Jake) idol. And my daughter (Madeline) loves him too. Maybe they can get an autograph.â
Spieth, Ko, and Maggert will receive their awards April 6 at the 44th ISPS HANDA GWAA Annual Awards Dinner presented by The PGA of America, PGA TOUR and USGA Wednesday April 6 in Augusta, Ga.