Not so fresh off her victory at the U.S. Women’s Open, followed by a week of TV appearances, Michelle Wie plays bogey-free at the LPGA NW Arkansas Championship
POSTED: 01:30 a.m. HST, Jun 28, 2014
ROGERS, Ark. >> Michelle Wie didn't let a hectic national media tour slow the momentum following her U.S. Women's Open victory last week at Pinehurst.
She shot a 5-under 66 to finish a stroke behind leader Alena Sharp after the first round of the LPGA NW Arkansas Championship.
Wie spent much of her week leading into the tournament busy on the national morning television circuit, only arriving at Pinnacle Country Club on Thursday.
Following a practice round and 12 hours of much-needed sleep, the most recognizable name on the LPGA Tour shot a bogey-free 66 on the 6,375-yard layout -- closing with a birdie on the par-5 18th and upstaging local favorite Stacy Lewis.
"Definitely running on fumes right now," Wie said. "... I think it definitely struck me on the back nine, a little bit tired, but I just was really excited to get out here and start playing again. New York was fun, but it's just fun to get back to playing golf."
Sharp, the Canadian ranked 234th in the world, had only 27 putts in her opening 65, while Mexico's Alejandra Llaneza matched Wie with a bogey-free 66.
Lewis, the world's top-ranked player who played at the nearby University of Arkansas, was 2 over after four holes before recovering to finish with a 70.
Ten players, including major champions So Yeon Ryu and Shanshan Feng, shot 67.
Wie overcame windy conditions to post the best round of the afternoon -- closing with a 4-under 31 on the back nine.
Wie, who was 64th on the LPGA Tour money list in 2012 and 41st last year, has yet to miss a cut this year and leads the money list with nearly $1.6 million.
"I just feel comfortable out there, and I'm trying to keep improving a little bit every day and still working on a lot of things," Wie said.