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Eleven-year-old Wie Steals Show

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USGAEleven-year-old Michelle Wie and medallist Candie Kung both advanced Thursday in the first day of match play in the U.S. Womens Amateur Public Links Championship.
 
While Kungs wins over Katie Ruhe and Erica Battle at the Kemper Lakes Golf Club were not overly surprising, it was Wie, of Honolulu, Hawaii who truly stole the headlines in Illinois.
 
Competing in her second USGA championship, Wie first burst onto the scene in this same event last year ' at the age of 10 ' to become the youngest woman ever to qualify for a womens amateur event hosted by the USGA.
 
Thursday, she disposed of Kathi Eutzler 4-and-3 in the first session of play, and then beat 22-year-old Hillary Homeyer 1-up in the afternoon.
 
Homeyer was certainly no pushover, as she was the runner-up qualifier to this event, has been a U.S. Curtis Cup player in the past and just days ago became a grad of Stanford University.
 
Yet, she did not prove strong enough on Thursday for Wie, who, at times, outdrove her playing competitor by up to 50 yards.
 
Shes really impressive, claimed a humbled Homeyer. She hits it hard and far. I didnt see any flaws in her game. Her swing is just unbelievable. Shes a great player and shes going to do a lot of good things. Her bad shots are only 20 feet from the hole. Why, I didnt even start playing golf until I was 13.
 
Other players who advanced into Fridays play were Lynn Simmons of Phoenix, Ariz., Kimberly Welch of Sacramento, Calif. and Alexis Wooster, who hails from Winnetka, Ill.
 
The Womens Amateur Public Links Championship is one of 13 events hosted annually by the USGA, ten of which are strictly designated for non-professionals.