Stacy Lewis leads LPGA Tour event in Thailand

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CHONBURI, Thailand — Stacy Lewis shot 9-under-par 63 in the first round Thursday to take a three-stroke lead at the LPGA Thailand.

The 2012 LPGA Tour player of the year had an eagle and birdied the last two holes to finish three strokes ahead of Karine Icher (66).

“I really started hitting the ball solid early on. Holed out for eagle on No. 3 and from there, I don’t know, that shot just really gave me the confidence to really start swinging at it,” said Lewis, a six-time LPGA winner, including the 2011 Kraft Nabisco major. “I think I missed two greens all day. I just had a ton of birdie putts and I even left a few out there.”

Inbee Park, Amy Yang, Catriona Matthew and Gerina Piller were four strokes behind Lewis.

China’s Shanshan Feng had 71 in her 2013 debut. Her caddie is Augusta native Mercer Leftwich III.

Lewis left two birdie putts a half-roll short before she made an eagle on the third hole.

“I was a little frustrated going to No. 3,” she said. “I think I had about 145 to the pin and I hit an 8-iron. It landed a few feet short and all the fans’ hands went up, so I knew it went in. I guess it was just perfect.”

WEB.COM TOUR: In Panama City, Panama, former University of South Carolina golfer Mark Anderson shares the lead after the first round of the tour’s season-opening Panama Claro Championship.

Anderson and Andrew Loupe used early tee times to beat the heat and the wind to fire 6-under-par 64s.

Anderson was a rookie on the PGA Tour in 2012 who didn’t keep his card.

Peter Tomasulo, James Nitties and Dae-Hyun Kim are one shot back.

Evans resident Vaughn Taylor had 67, Augusta’s Scott Brown shot 68 and Aiken’s Kevin Kisner turned in 70.


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