Brittany Lang, newly selected for the US Solheim Cup team, validated captain Juli Inkster’s confidence on Thursday by grabbing the first-round lead in the LPGA Classic.
Lang got off to a sizzling start on the par-72 Senator course with five birdies in the first seven holes. She was seven-under through 12 and looked set for a possible course record until she was slowed by bogeys at 13 and 14.
“It was just one of those days,” said Lang, who birdied 16 and 17 to hold a two-stroke lead over Tiffany Joh, Sydnee Michaels and Ryann O’Toole after 18 holes.
“It was so enjoyable,” Lang added. “I wasn’t thinking about a whole lot. You know, I was just super committed to seeing my shots, it was so much fun.”
Lang, whose 65 matched her best round of the year, said her golf was “pretty flawless.”
“Even when I was making pars, I was burning the edge from 10 feet,” she said. “Every hole I was right there. The birdies on 16 and 17 were pretty big after the bogeys on 13 and 14... small misses, but I stayed aggressive.”
All three of the trio sharing second played without a bogey.
They were one stroke in front of a group of five players on 68: South Korea’s Kim Hyo-joo, Ariya Jutanugarn of Thailand, Denmark’s Therese Koelbaek, Paraguay’s Julieta Granada and Feng Simin of China.
Of the Taiwanese playing, Hsu Wei-ling was best-placed after a first-round 69 for a nine-way share of 10th, with Candie Kung also in the group.
Compatriot Yani Tseng was a shot back for a share of 19th, while Min Lee had a 74 for a share of 78th.
Additional reporting by staff writer
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