Michelle Wie usually enjoys her visits to Stanford, where she spent five years earning a degree (2012) while playing professional golf.
She was met with bad news this time around. Her favorite Froyo café on campus was closed for construction.
"It's a place I definitely love going to," Wie said during a press conference Tuesday for the Swinging Skirts LGPA Classic that gets underway Thursday at the Lake Merced Golf Course. "It was under renovation. I was banging the doors, just crying."
Wie also enjoys meeting with the Cardinal women's golf team, which was in Colorado for the Pac-12 Championships, so that was another small setback.
The 25-year-old golfer, ninth in the latest Rolex LPGA ranking, found other ways to enjoy her visit to the campus.
"I just like to walk around," Wie said. "I think the kids there now kind of look at me strange. I have this weird look in my eyes. Every time someone rides by on a bike, I'm like 'Hi.' I'm this old person on campus now just creeping out. But it's amazing. There are always new buildings, new stuff. It's just nice."
Wie, who finished 11th in last weekend's LOTTE championship on the Ko Olina golf course in Kapolei, Hawaii, her native state, enters the Northern California event on an upswing.
"Every week this year I feel like it's been getting better, just working on a couple of things," Wie said. "That's exactly what I want to do; improve a little bit each and every week. I'm having a lot of fun. Playing the last week at home was a lot of the fun. I'm looking to this week."
Her finish in Hawaii was her best of the year, though she has missed just one cut in seven events. Wie went 70-69-73-73--285 in the LOTTE, 3-under for the tournament.
Wie's best tournament score was a 7-under 281 at the Kia Classic in Carlsbad, which left her in a tie for 29th.
Wie came to the Swinging Skirts last year on a roll. She had finished second at the Kraft Nabisco Championship and won the LOTTE championship. She finished ninth at Lake Merced and went on to win the Women's US Open, her first victory in a major.
"It definitely helped boost my confidence," Wie said. "It's nice to know that I can do it. It's motivating. I did it once and got a taste for it. You want to do it again and again."
She finished in the top 10 in 12 tournaments, despite a rough summer that led to a pair of withdrawals. Wie finished the year strong, with three top-5 showings.
"What matters is what you do this week and what you do on every hole," she said. "I try to focus on the present."
Wie will be competing along with 19 of the top 20 ranked golfers this weekend, including top-ranked Lydia Ko, who won this tournament last year.
"Lake Merced is a great golf course. It's a great challenge," Wie said. "It feels different coming back to the Bay Area. It feels like home for me. It's been a fun week so far. If it could just warm up a little bit, that would be great."
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