Galloway, NJ – Stacy Lewis and Mika Miyazato both posted rounds of six-under 65 on Friday to share the first-round lead of the ShopRite LPGA Classic.
Paula Creamer and Mariajo Uribe are tied for third place at four-under 67, while Maude-Aimee LeBlanc is alone in fifth at three-under 68 at Stockton Seaview Hotel and Golf Club.
Lexi Thompson, 17, posted a two-under 69 and headlines a group tied for sixth.
World No. 1 Yani Tseng only managed an even-par 71 on Thursday.
Lewis, who won this year's Mobile Bay LPGA Classic, began on the 10th tee Friday and birdied the 13th and 17th holes in relatively benign conditions. When she made the turn, the wind picked up, and Lewis' play reflected the changes.
At the first, she poured in a 25-foot birdie effort, but at the par-four second, her approach, dead into the wind, actually went over the green. Lewis chipped past the flag and three-putted for a double-bogey to fall back to one- under par.
She atoned for the error quickly, thanks in part, to the wind. At the par-five third, Lewis had 176 yards to the front of the green with her second, and she knocked a six-iron to six feet. Lewis drained the eagle putt to get her round back on track.
"The wind just came out of nowhere," said Lewis. "Came back and made eagle on three, so that really kind of got things going and then I made a few putts coming in, so it was nice."
Lewis birdied the fifth to get to four-under, then joined Miyazato in the lead late. She rolled in a 15-foot birdie putt at eight, then left a 10-foot eagle putt short at the par-five ninth. Lewis tapped in for back-to-back birdies to finish her round.
"I think confidence is everything for me right now," said Lewis, who earned her first major title last year at the Kraft Nabisco Championship. "Going back to the Kraft last year I've gained so much confidence. If I'm comfortable over a shot and I feel good about it, I'm probably going to hit a good shot. And so good shots breed more confidence and so I just try to keep it rolling."
Miyazato birdied the third and fifth holes, then closed her opening in style. At the par-five ninth, she had 220 yards for her second at hit a seven-wood to 20 feet. Miyazato rolled in the eagle putt to make the turn at four-under par.
Miyazato got to five-under with a birdie at the par-three 11th. At the par- three 17th, she nearly recorded an ace, but settled for a three-foot birdie that got her in at six-under par.
"I hit it almost perfect, but I think putting was more off today and second shot, I had more confidence," said Miyazato.
Azahara Munoz, who won the last event on the LPGA Tour, the Sybase Match Play Championship two weeks ago, shot a two-under 69 and is tied for sixth with Karin Sjodin, Anna Nordqvist, Christina Kim, Mo Martin and Thompson.
NOTES: Lewis has two tour wins, while Miyazato is winless on tour...Defending champion Brittany Lincicome had a one-over 72 on Friday...The struggles of Michelle Wie continued on Friday with a seven-over 78.