Lexi Thompson is the only woman in the Franklin Templeton Shootout field this week, and she’ll play the same tees as the men. Shock! Awe! Gasp! Right? No, not really. Let’s not make a bigger deal out of this than we need to. Touting this event as some kind of tricked-up Battle of the Sexes would be insulting not only to Thompson’s ability but also to the caliber of elite female golfers in general.
Thompson finished the 2016 LPGA season second in driving distance at 277.40 yards, which was longer than 26 players’ driving distance on the PGA Tour in the 2015-16 season. Thompson hit nearly 77 percent of her greens in regulation, or more than six and a half percentage points more than the PGA Tour average. And her 70.37 scoring average? That was a stroke clear of the PGA Tour scoring average.