LONDON – LPGA rookie Alena Sharp posted the second best score by a Canadian for the first round of the CN Canadian Women’s Open on Thursday.
But her even par 72 at the London Hunt and Country Club left her eight strokes back of the leader and tied for 31st. American Angela Stanford set a torrid pace with her eight-under 64 that produced a three-shot lead over three others – Cristie Kerr, Vicki Goetze-Ackerman and Jee Young Lee.
Stanford’s score tied the lowest ever shot at the Women’s Open.
Sharp got her day off to a strong start and at one point was three-under, giving the impression she was going to challenge for the lead. But a number of bogey’s pushed her back when her putting game suffered a minor collapse.
Besides Sharp, three other area golfers are competing in the event which has attracted golfers from 17 countries.
Burlington’s Salimah Mussani is one stroke back of Sharp after her opening round one over par 73. Oakville’s Jessica Shepley, making her LPGA debut, was two-over par at 75 and Georgetown’s Mary Ann Lapointe, an amateur, was one stroke back of Shepley.
Lorie Kane of Charlottetown was the top Canadian, with an impressive 4-under 68 and is tied with defending champion Meena Lee and South Korea’s Il Mi Chung in a group four shots back of the lead.
Up for grabs is a purse totalling USD$1.7 million.