Pressel tops elite partners, Farr field

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SYLVANIA, Ohio --- Morgan Pressel was paired with the world's top two players in the opening round of the Jamie Farr Owens Corning Classic.

Then she outplayed them both.

Pressel, Song-Hee Kim and Laura Diaz each shot 7-under-par 64 to share the lead, one shot ahead of Michelle Wie and Suzann Pettersen on Thursday at Highland Meadows.

"It was a great pairing," Pressel said, after playing with top-ranked Lorena Ochoa (67 on Thursday) and No. 2 Yani Tseng (68).

"They're both good friends and they have a lot of fun. They're great to play with."

Then Pressel, ranked No. 37, laughed and added, "Even though I hit first all day."

Defending champion Paula Creamer, who shot a personal-best and course-record 60 in last year's first round, withdrew because of a thumb injury moments before her morning tee time.

Pressel was second at the Farr two years ago to five-time winner Se Ri Pak. She didn't have a bogey and birdied four holes in a row late in her round.

Her 64 matched her best round since joining the tour in 2006. After bursting on the scene with a runner-up finish at the 2005 U.S. Women's Open,

Pressel was considered a budding LPGA star, and became the youngest player to win a major at the 2007 Kraft Nabisco Championship.

She's won only once since.

EUROPEAN TOUR: In Saint-Quentin-En-Yvelines, France, Martin Kaymer tied a course record with 9-under-par 62 to take a three-stroke lead after the first round of the French Open.

Kaymer overcame a painful blister and a bogey on his first hole with eight birdies and an eagle on No. 3 to tie the record set by Eduardo Romero in 2005 on the 7,300-yard Golf National course.

Thongchai Jaidee, Rafa Echenique, Scott Strange, Peter Hanson and John Bickerton all shot 65s.


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