Stacy Lewis pulled out of the 2019 Solheim Cup and Juli Inkster's American side on Tuesday, citing a back injury that will preclude her from playing.
"I’m extremely disappointed not to be able to play," said Lewis, who was named one of two Inkster captain's picks along with Morgan Pressel. "I’m a competitor and I want to play, but I had a back injury flare up last week. I've done everything I could possibly do over the last week to be ready to play. For my health and what I feel is in the best interest of the team, I decided to take myself out."
Lewis, who returned to the LPGA this summer after the birth of her first child, is ranked No. 81 in the world. Inkster added Lewis to the team for her experience in the Solheim Cup format, including playing in road games.
Lewis will be replaced by Inkster's named first alternate, Ally McDonald, meaning the U.S. team, which is considered a favorite at Gleneagles in Scotland, will have a record-high six rookies on the squad.
Inkster said Lewis will remain part of the team in Scotland, helping out as possible, and she expects McDonald to be a contributor.
"Stacy will stay with Team USA over the next week and will still be an incredible asset to our crew," Inkster said. "But when I had to choose an alternate, I knew Ally would be able to step up for the challenge. She's got a cool head but a fiery spirit. I know she'll bring her best to Team USA."
McDonald fared well in her fourth LPGA season, notching three major top-20 finishes.
“I didn’t want to make the team this way, but when Juli told me what was going on with Stacy, I was ready to step into either role, if that was being here and being part of the experience or being ready to tee it up,” said McDonald. “It was just mentally preparing for either scenario. I’m obviously very excited to play. This was a goal of mine to play on this team.”
McDonald joins Marina Alex, Nelly Korda, Megan Khang, Annie Park and Brittany Altomare as the rookies on the team.
The 2019 Solheim Cup starts Friday, pitting 12 American women against 12 European women, captained by Scot Catriona Matthew, in 28 matches over three days to determine the winner of the biennial competition.