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Lee-Bentham struck mom with ball prior to opening 67

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Rebecca Lee-Bentham’s preparation for the Lotte Championship was a painful exercise for her mother, but Lee-Bentham made her mom’s headache worth it in a fast start in the first round.

In a practice round Monday, Lee-Bentham dropped an extra ball and hit a second shot into the 18th green at Ko Olina Golf Club outside Honolulu. The shot struck her mom, Ann, in the head as she stood aside the green.

While her mom got a bump in the head, she wasn’t seriously hurt. A hat helped soften the blow.

“Just one of those freak accidents,” Lee-Bentham said when she met the media after the first round. “Just so glad and relieved that right now she’s fine.”

Lee-Bentham opened the Lotte Championship with a 5-under-par 67 to move into a tie for sixth. Her mom walked all 18 holes in Wednesday’s first round. Lee-Bentham is a second year pro from Canada who lost her status as a rookie last season but won it back gaining co-medalist honors at LPGA Q-School. She opened this season with her best finish on tour, a tie for 18th at the ISPS Handa Women’s Australian Open.

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