CAMBRIDGE, Ontario (AP) — Suzann Pettersen and Mi Hyang Lee each shot an 8-under 64 Thursday to share the first-round lead at the Manulife LPGA Classic.
Hyo Joo Kim, Gonzalez Escall and Shanshan Feng were one shot back at 65, followed another shot back by Alena Sharp, Emily Pedersen, and Jodi Ewart Shadoff.
Pettersen, who recently lost her yardage book for the course and had to write notes from scratch this week, said she trusted her eye and it paid off with six birdies over one eight-hole stretch.
“We woke up this morning to perfect conditions,” she said. “You can fire at pins and get to par fives, which is fun. I think it’s the best way to set up a golf course and get low scores.”
Sharp, from nearby Hamilton, started on the back nine and bogeyed her opening hole before recovering on the 12th with a 6-iron to leave herself a 15-footer for eagle. Sharp connected and followed it up with three birdies over her next four holes.
Brittany Marchand, a Symetra Tour player entered as a sponsor’s invite, was in a group at 67. The Orangeville, Ontario, native — who had a morning tee time — fired seven birdies over her round to go with a pair of bogeys. She even had the clubhouse lead for a spell.
The course dried out a little as the round progressed. Warm temperatures were expected to continue through Sunday’s final round.
The 6,613-yard track is still recovering from an unusually wet and cool spring in the area. Players were allowed to lift, clean and replace balls on closely mowed fairway areas.
Joining Marchand at 67 were Ariya Jutanugarn, In Gee Chun, Angel Yin, Lexi Thompson and Lee Lopez. Defending champion Caroline Masson opened with a 70.
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