KAPOLEI, Hawaii — Quick finishes put Yuka Saso and Brittany Altomare on the prime of the Lotte Championship leaderboard Wednesday morning with rounds of 8-under 64. Nobody caught them in best afternoon circumstances at Kapolei Golf Membership.
Fourth-ranked Nelly Korda got here closest, taking pictures a 65 that left her tied with two-time main champion So Yeon Ryu and Ally Ewing, each of whom performed within the morning. Stacy Lewis was two photographs again on a day when 47 gamers shot within the 60s.
Jessica Korda, Nelly’s older sister, was a part of a bunch at 67 that included the world’s top-ranked newbie, 17-year-old Rose Zhang. Lydia Ko additionally shot 67, coming off a record-tying final-round 62 to complete second within the yr’s first main, the ANA Inspiration, two weeks in the past.
Sixth-ranked Brooke Henderson, who received this occasion in 2018 and 2019 – final yr’s event was canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic — shot 68, as did No. 5 Danielle Kang. Henderson hit each fairway and inexperienced in regulation, however wanted 32 putts.
Saso, a 19-year-old from the Philippines, birdied 5 of her final six holes. She is enjoying on a sponsor’s exemption. The 2019 Women Junior PGA Champion turned professional that November after incomes her card on the Japan LPGA Tour, the place she is at the moment third on the cash listing.
She known as her first official spherical in Hawaii — “It is like Philippines however colder than Philippines and windier than Philippines” — fortunate.
“I made some good putts, had good up and downs, my driving was very constant at present,” Saso mentioned. “I believe, yeah, that made me fortunate.”
Altomare, who like Saso, completed on the entrance 9, performed it in 29 with birdies on Nos. 1-7, ending the run with a chip-in. She wanted simply 24 putts to submit her career-low LPGA spherical. The four-time All-American at Virginia has by no means received in seven years on tour.
Hawaii-born Michelle Wie West, the 2014 champion, shouldn’t be enjoying. She competed within the earlier two LPGA occasions in her return after giving start to a daughter final yr.
After seven years at close by Ko Olina Golf Membership, the event moved to Kapolei, which beforehand hosted the LPGA’s Hawaiian Open from 1996 to 2001 and has additionally hosted the PGA Tour Champions.