Jutanugarn leads Girls' Junior
Daly City, CA (Sports Network) - Defending champion Ariya Jutanugarn carded a 1-under 71 on Monday to grab a 1-stroke lead after the first round of stroke play at the U.S. Girls' Junior Championship.
Jutanugarn is looking to become just the third player in history to successfully defend her title. Judy Eller (1957-58) and Hollis Stacy (1969-71) were the two that achieved the feat.
The third-ranked female amateur traded a bogey for a birdie from the 11th. She tripped to another bogey on the par-5 14th at Lake Merced Golf Club.
Jutanugarn erased that mistake with a birdie on the 17th. Around the turn, she birdied the first, but faltered to a bogey on the second. Jutanugarn parred six in a row before closing with a birdie at the ninth to finish in red figures.
Canada's Brogan McKinnon is alone in second place at even-par 72. Kathleen Gallagher, the daughter of PGA Tour player Jim Gallagher, Jr., is one shot back at 1-over-par 73.
Lydia Ko, the top-ranked amateur female in the world, was a late entry into the championship. Ko, the medalist at last year's U.S. Women's Amateur, carded a 2-over 74 and shares fourth place with Gigi Stoll, the 2011 Oregon Girls Junior Amateur champion, Nicole Morales, the 2011 Polo Golf Junior Classic winner, Jordan Ferreira, the 2011 Washington State Golf Association Junior Girls' Player of the Year, and Brooke Mackenzie Henderson.
Marijosse Navarro, the 2012 Mexican Women's Amateur Championship, and Annie Park, who advanced to the quarterfinals of the 2012 Amateur Public Links and the semifinals of the same event last year, both shot 3-over 75. They were joined in ninth place by Mikayla Harmon, Courtney Dow, Lilia Kha-Tu Vu and Hee Wook Choi.
The second round of stroke play will take place on Tuesday, while match play runs from Wednesday to Saturday.
07/16 23:41:46 ET