I definitely took advantage of the morning tee time, Karrie said of her play this morning. Things have been up and down lately, but it feels good to start good.
She knew she was on a roll after hitting her 7-iron to three feet on hole No. 1. That was three birdies in a row after holes 17 and 18, she said. That was key because that put me 6-under par through 10 holes.
Webb, winner of this event in 1999, is on familiar ground. The awesome Aussie recorded nine birdies today in a round that was nearly perfect, save one bogey on the par-4 sixth. Her closest competitor, Kristal Parker-Manzo, is four strokes behind.
It was an incredible turn around for Parker-Manzo, who has missed the cut in five of the 10 events she has played this season. The Ohio native managed to record an error-free round at Locust Hill C.C., which she capped off with four birdies.
The green are soft so you can fire at the pins, Parker-Manzo said of her morning tee time. The greens will be tougher this afternoon with all the heel prints. Having a morning time was an advantage today.
A seven-year veteran on the LPGA Tour, Parker-Manzos career-best finish is a second-place finish at the 1996 Standard Register PING. Although this wasnt her best round of the season, she described it as the most steady. Ive been working with my coach David Leadbetter, and weve made some changes. I take more time and have been more patient. It all came together today.
Gloria Park and Mi Hyun Kim trail the lead, tied for third.
Defending champion Laura Davies, who beat all odds to win last years event, recorded an opening 71 after making two bogeys on the backside and three birdies. Davies managed to hit only a discouraging nine fairways and 10 greens in regulation, with 28 putts during her round.
Kelly Robbins, Juli Inkster and a number of others finished the first round at 1-under 71
Webb finished in the top five a mere two times on the LPGA Tour this year. Her best finish to date is a tie for fourth at the McDonalds LPGA Championship. She has 26 career victories to her credit. Currently 16th on the money list, Webb is over $1 million behind Annika Sorenstam this season.
Sorenstam, fresh off her win at the Evian Masters, is taking this week off.
Full Scores from the Wegman's Rochester LPGA