Three Share First-Round LPGA Lead
LINCOLN, Calif. (AP) _ Michelle McGann, Hiromi Kobayashi and Cindy Figg-Currier survived gusty wind and chilly weather to shoot 4-under-par 68s Thursday in the opening round of the $600,000 LPGA Longs Drugs Classic.
Dottie Pepper, who last week captured the season’s first major, the Dinah Shore, with a record score, withdrew from the tournament because of the flu. Pepper, second on the money list, skipped Wednesday’s pro-am, then withdrew from the tournament after seeing a doctor Thursday morning.
McGann survived a double-bogey on the tight Twelve Bridges Golf Club layout. Her round included two birdies on the front nine and three more on the back. She also had an eagle at the par-5, No.12, hitting a 3-wood to the green and sinking a 20-foot putt.
Kobayashi’s round was steadier. She started with a birdie at No. 1 and also birdied No. 8. After three more birdies on the back, she took her only bogey after an errant approach to No. 17.
Playing in the afternoon, when scores were generally higher, Figg-Currier had four birdies and an eagle to offset two bogeys. She holed a chip from 122 yards for eagle on the par-4 16th.
Juli Inkster and Mhari McKay were one shot back at 69, and Sally Little was among five players who shot 70.
Defending champion Donna Andrews finished with a 74. Annika Sorenstam, who won the tournament in 1997, had an uneven round with four birdies and three bogeys, carding a 71.
Divots: Carin Koch, who led the tournament with a first-round 66 a year ago, shot 76 Thursday. ... Emilee Klein was 3-under through nine holes, but finished with an even-par 72. ... Pepper’s replacement, Michelle Dobek, didn’t fare well, shooting the day’s high round, 86.