Defending champ Ko shares lead in Canada

The Sports Xchange
The SportsXchange

One year after making history, Lydia Ko picked up where she left off in the CN Canadian Women's Open.
The 16-year-old amateur from New Zealand, who won the event last year to become the youngest champion in LPGA Tour history, shares the first-round lead after shooting a 5-under-par 65 Thursday at Royal Mayfair Golf & Country Club in Edmonton, Alberta.
Christel Boeljon of the Netherlands, who made a hole-in-one, and Angela Stanford of Texas share the lead with Ko. Christie Kerr and Paula Creamer are tied for fourth at 66, with Inbee Park, Na Yeon Choi, Karine Icher and Jennifer Kirby at 67. Kirby is the lone Canadian in the top 30.
Ko made four birdies on the front nine, then added birdies at No. 10 and No. 14 to move to 6 under par. She made her lone bogey at No. 15.
"I started off really well with a birdie, but when I have a birdie on the first hole, I haven't really played that well," Ko said."I was kind of nervous that I did make a birdie on the first. But I guess birdies are good, and I think I played pretty solid today."
Boeljon charged into contention with a stellar three-hole stretch on the back nine. She birdied the par-4 15th hole, then aced the 16th hole and birdied the par-4 17th.
For the 126-yard hole-in-one, Boeljon used a 9-iron.
"I only realized it (went in the hole) by the lady that was behind the green that put her hands up, and I was like, I guess it's in, because we couldn't see with the sun," Boeljon said. "Everyone was high fiving, so we got up to the hole, and we see it's in. It helps your score out a lot."
Boeljon also birdied No. 8 in her bogey-free round.
Stanford also enjoyed a bogey-free day, making three birdies on the front nine and two on the back nine. She was coming off a rough weekend in the Solheim Cup, when she lost all four of her matches as the United States team fell to the Europeans in Colorado.
"Try to take positives from it," Stanford said of the Solheim Cup. "I don't know, it's hard because I'm the only one that has to live with it. I'm the one that it's probably haunting the most, so it's been really hard. I've thought about going home a few times, and I just don't think that would be the best thing was for me to get back on the horse. I had to get out and play and I guess just try to put it behind me."
Last year in the Canadian Open, Ko closed with a 5-under-par 67 to claim a three-stroke victory over Park at Vancouver Golf Club in Coquitlam, British Columbia. Ko became the fifth amateur to win on the LPGA Tour and the youngest, one year after Lexi Thompson captured the Navistar LPGA Classic at the age of 16.

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