Ruixin Liu battled more than the field to take early LPGA lead at Kroger Queen City Championship

Managing allergies on the golf course can be a tough task, especially at the professional level.

Ruixin Liu made it look easy on Thursday at the Kroger Queen City Championship. The 24-year-old from China rode a hot putter all the way to the top of the leaderboard at 7 under despite admittedly feeling awful during the first round at Kenwood Country Club in Cincinnati, Ohio.

“I pretty much made everything except for hole No. 12,” said Liu, who was still dealing with allergies that hit so hard last week she was forced to withdraw from the Portland Classic. “That’s the only bad hole I played today, because my second shot was only like 18 feet to the hole for eagle and I three-putt that one.”

The China native who now lives in Orlando went bogey-free with seven birdies, including five on the front nine, and leads the tournament by one shot over Linnea Strom (66).

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“I’m still a little not clear today,” Liu said of her health. “I don’t know how I did this good, but it happen and I’m very happy to take it.”

Photos: Kroger Queen City Championship

Liu, the Epson Tour Player of the Year in 2019, is staying humble and in the moment as she looks for her first win on the LPGA. Across 14 starts this season Liu has missed five cuts, withdrawn twice and has a best finish of T-9 at the Dow Great Lakes Bay Invitational back in July.

“Well, I don’t want to give myself too much expectation because physically I don’t feel great, so I’m just going to take a good break, try to sleep good, and try to do the same thing tomorrow,” she added.

Story originally appeared on GolfWeek