Yuka Saso and Brittany Altomare both shot 8-under par 64 this morning at Kapolei Golf Club. Despite some hard afternoon charges, it was enough to keep them in the lead after the first round of the LPGA Lotte Championship.
Nelly Korda shot 7 under in the afternoon to tie with Ally Ewing and S.Y. Ryu, who played in the morning, at one shot back after posting 65.
Stacy Lewis was two shots back after fashioning a 66, and Nelly’s sister Jessica is among a group at 5 under that also includes Lydia Ko. Ko is coming off a 10-under par 62 on the final day of the ANA Inspiration two weeks ago.
Sei Young Kim, who won this tournament as a rookie in 2015, is also in the star-studded group of seven at 5 under.
Altomare made seven consecutive birdies before making the turn (she played the back nine first).
“Just feels like natural, and you can be aggressive and just kind of play free golf,” said Altomare, who added that she didn’t remember ever making seven birdies in a row before.
“I made some good putts, had good up and downs, my driving was very consistent today,” Saso said.
Reigning event champion Brooke Henderson, who won the Lotte in 2018 and 2019, shot 4-under 68.
Before last year’s cancellation, the first eight years of this tournament were played at Ko Olina Golf Club. The LPGA has not disclosed any reason for the switch or if it is temporary or permanent. Kapolei hosted the LPGA Hawaiian Open from 1996 to 2001.