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With Solheim Cup on her mind, Toledo-born Stacy Lewis finds success with new putter at Diamond Resorts TOC

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LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. – Stacy Lewis packed her clubs away for the Christmas holiday but knew exactly where she wanted to pick up in 2021: putting.

Husband Gerrod Chadwell found the answer sitting in the garage.

“I was starting to hit it better,” said Lewis, “but just putting horrendously really.”

There’s an untold number of putters in the couple’s Houston garage but Chadwell went straight for a T.P. Mills design that she received eight years ago and never put to use.

“It’s more of a center-shafted, really different than what I’ve ever played,” said Lewis. “He’s like, just putt with it. You’re going to be able to see what you’re doing wrong and what you need to change. A lot of it was with setup, just the way I was set up, the way I was holding onto the putter.”

Diamond Resorts Tournament of Champions: Leaderboard

Lewis, 35, kept the “new” putter in the bag for Round 1 of the Diamond Resorts Tournament of Champions and was pleased to find immediate results. The former No. 1 cruised to an opening 66 that included three straight birdies on Nos. 12-14 and 26 putts.

Lewis’ T.P. Mills putter (Golfweek photo)

On the par-3 14th, Lewis thought she might win the “Outback Steak for Life” prize after her finely struck 6-iron tracked toward the flagstick. Alas, the ball wound up 5 feet from the hole.

Big steak fan?

“Yeah, meat and potatoes let’s go,” said Lewis. “I was all in.”

The first time Lewis played in the TOC, daughter Chesnee was 3 months old. The goal ever since has been to get back to this event so they could take Chesnee to Disney World. Soon after she won the Ladies Scottish Open last August, Lewis told Chesnee that the trip was on. She decided to wait until after the event to take in the parks in case her back got too sore from carrying Chesnee around.

“I’m probably more excited, because she has no clue what it is yet,” said Lewis. “She loves Mickey and Minnie. She’s gotten into ‘Frozen.’ I just can’t wait to see it through her eyes.”

Of course, a victory this week would go a long way toward Lewis’ big goal for 2021: making the Solheim Cup team.

Lewis revealed that U.S. captain Pat Hurst talked to her about being an assistant captain in Toledo before she won in Scotland.

“She’s had to go back to the drawing board again,” said Lewis. Michelle Wie and Angela Stanford, who also won late last year, have already been named assistant captains.

While Lewis has called Texas home for quite some time, she was actually born in Toledo. The Solheim Cup would be a special week at historic Inverness for the hometown player, even if there might be fewer fans this year than normal due to COVID-19.

“All my family is there,” she said. “I mean, it’s No. 1 for me.”

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original article link https://golfweek.usatoday.com/2021/01/21/stacy-lewis-lpga-diamond-resorts-toc-solheim-cup-2021/

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