sunny.png
Monday September 23rd, 2019 4:02PM

Lewis 1 behind in 1st event as a mother on LPGA Tour

By The Associated Press

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. (AP) — No one was entirely sure what to expect from the first LPGA Tour event of the year — least of all Stacy Lewis.

Nearly three months after Lewis became a mother, and six months after she last played on tour, she opened with seven birdies on Thursday for a 5-under 66 that left her one shot behind Brooke Henderson and Eun-Hee Ji at the Diamond Resorts Tournament of Champions.

"Pleasantly surprised," Lewis said. "Had pretty low expectations going into the day. Just really made a lot of putts. I had some weird shots, which I knew was going to happen having not played in a while. I don't know where it came from, but I'm going to take it."

Henderson overcame a slow start with a bogey on the second hole and a par save on No. 3 at the Tranquilo Golf Club at Four Seasons. She birdied five of her last eight holes for a 65 to tie Ji, who had a bogey-free round.

The tournament — the first season-opener in Florida for the LPGA since 2015 — is only for LPGA winners each of the last two years.

Ariya Jutanugarn, coming off a year in which she claimed every major award, opened with a 67.

The event had the feel of a pro-am because of all the celebrities and athletes, although it wasn't all hits and giggles. Along with the 26-player field from the LPGA Tour competing for a $1.2 million purse, 49 entertainers are competing for a $500,000 prize fund using the modified Stableford scoring system.

Tennis player Mardy Fish led that field with 39 points for a two-point lead over a group that included retired pitcher Mark Mulder.

But it was a different vibe from most LPGA events.

"I had to remind myself it wasn't Wednesday afternoon, it was Thursday, and I had to get a good score together," Henderson said. "I think that's when things kicked in on the front nine. I started getting a couple of birdies to recover from that bogey, and then from there I was ready to go and made a lot of birdies."

Lydia Ko joined Lewis at 66. Both formerly were No. 1 in the world.

Another shot back were Jutanugarn, Lexi Thompson and Mirim Lee.

Jutanugarn started the year with a new caddie, who previously worked for his fiancee, ANA Inspiration winner Pernilla Lindeberg. She opened with a 77, the highest score among LPGA players.

The Thai said she had some nerves from not having played in two months. And not being used to celebrities in her group also required an adjustment.

"Because I didn't play for so long — especially playing with them — I feel upset. He hit like 60 yards past me," said Jutanugarn, who played in the same group with retired baseball players Josh Beckett and Kevin Millar. "Every hole he has a chance to make eagle, so I thought, 'Maybe I'm not that good.'"

She was referring to Beckett on the long tee shots. She didn't know much about either, though she figured one thing one quickly.

"I know they are baseball players. I know both of them are really famous," she said. "And nobody asked me for an autograph. They all asked them."

Lewis had not played on the LPGA Tour since a 66 to tie for 39th on July 12 at the Marathon Classic in Ohio. She gave birth to her first child, a daughter they named Chesnee, on Oct. 25.

The biggest difference was her routine.

She now has to remember where to find daycare, to get out the door a little earlier and making sure she has all the bags for her game and her daughter.

"You've got to take three trips to the care to get out the door every morning," she said. "So it's a new normal."

Her game looked like the old Stacy Lewis, at least for the opening round. She was 1 under at the turn until rolling in five birdies to offset one bogey on the back nine.

  • Associated Categories: Associated Press (AP), AP Sports, AP Online Golf, AP Entertainment, APOnline Celebrity News, AP Sports - Women's Golf
© Copyright 2019 AccessWDUN.com
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
Total lunar eclipse meets supermoon Sunday night
Moon, Earth and sun line up this weekend for the only total lunar eclipse this year and next
8:55PM ( 7 minutes ago )
Federal workers caught in the middle apply for unemployment
Thousands of federal employees and their families are applying for unemployment and food stamps to get by as the longest government shutdown in U.S. history drags on
8:40PM ( 22 minutes ago )
Rams thin on playoff experience, hungry for Super Bowl run
Ndamukong Suh joined the Los Angeles Rams because he thought they would give him a chance to get his first playoff victory
8:38PM ( 23 minutes ago )
Associated Press (AP)
Phil Mickelson shoots 12-under 60 at La Quinta in 2019 debut
Phil Mickelson shot a 12-under 60 in the Desert Classic in his 2019 debut
7:09PM ( 1 hour ago )
Knicks' last-second goaltend gives Wizards win in London
Allonzo Trier was called for goaltending on a layup attempt by Thomas Bryant with 0.4 seconds remaining, giving the Washington Wizards a 101-100 victory over the New York Knicks in London
6:57PM ( 2 hours ago )
Sharapova vs Wozniacki in key 3rd-round match at Aussie Open
Caroline Wozniacki will have her most daunting challenge in defense of her Australian Open women's singles title when she takes on five-time Grand Slam champion Maria Sharapova in the third round at Melbourne Park
6:50PM ( 2 hours ago )
AP Sports
Tiger Woods to start his year at Torrey Pines again
Tiger and Torrey: Woods to open season in San Diego again; has won Farmers Insurance Open 7 times
1:52PM ( 1 day ago )
Canadian rookie Svensson has career day to lead Sony Open
Canadian rookie Adam Svensson shoots 61 and leads Sony Open
11:55PM ( 6 days ago )
Putnam has career-best 62 to lead Sony Open
No practice round is no problem for Andrew Putnam, who opens with 62 to lead Sony Open
7:41PM ( 1 week ago )
AP Online Golf
Prince Philip, queen's husband, uninjured after car accident
Buckingham Palace: Prince Philip, the husband of Britain's Queen Elizabeth II, uninjured after car accident
5:32PM ( 3 hours ago )
Britain's Prince Philip, queen's husband, in car accident
Buckingham Palace: Prince Philip, the husband of Britain's Queen Elizabeth II, uninjured after car accident
2:51PM ( 6 hours ago )
Ex-CBS CEO Les Moonves to challenge severance denial
Ex-CBS CEO Les Moonves demands arbitration proceedings to challenge the denial of his $120 million severance package.
2:50PM ( 6 hours ago )
AP Entertainment
Melissa Gilbert, Timothy Busfield sell items in estate sale
An estate sale in Michigan sold more than 200 items belonging to "Little House on the Prairie" star Melissa Gilbert and her husband, Emmy-winning actor Timothy Busfield
11:00AM ( 10 hours ago )
The Latest: Muguruza, Konta to 3rd set after 12:30 am start
Garbine Muguruza and Johanna Konta are working overtime at the Australian Open _ heading to a third set in a match believed to have had the latest starting time in tournament history
10:35AM ( 10 hours ago )
The Latest: Djokovic tops Tsonga in '08 Aussie final redo
Top-seeded Novak Djokovic beat Jo-Wilfried Tsonga 6-3, 7-5, 6-4 to reach the Australian Open's third round in a rematch of their 2008 final at Melbourne Park
9:08AM ( 11 hours ago )
APOnline Celebrity News
AP Sports - Women's Golf
Total lunar eclipse meets supermoon Sunday night
Moon, Earth and sun line up this weekend for the only total lunar eclipse this year and next
8:55PM ( 7 minutes ago )
Federal workers caught in the middle apply for unemployment
Thousands of federal employees and their families are applying for unemployment and food stamps to get by as the longest government shutdown in U.S. history drags on
8:40PM ( 22 minutes ago )
Rams thin on playoff experience, hungry for Super Bowl run
Ndamukong Suh joined the Los Angeles Rams because he thought they would give him a chance to get his first playoff victory
8:38PM ( 23 minutes ago )
Judge acquits 3 Chicago officers of Laquan McDonald cover-up
Judge acquits 3 Chicago police officers of trying to cover up 2014 shooting of black teen
8:34PM ( 28 minutes ago )
The Latest: Greek stars in early action at Australian Open
Greek stars Stefanos Tsitsipas and Maria Sakkari featured on two of the three main show courts at Melbourne Park as rain delayed the start of play on the outside courts
8:33PM ( 29 minutes ago )