Lexi Thompson soars, Michelle Wie stumbles in Round 1 of ANA

Lexi Thompson soars, Michelle Wie stumbles in Round 1 of ANA

Lexi Thompson soars, Michelle Wie stumbles in Round 1 of ANA

"Rolled in a few good putts and just gave myself a lot of good chances".

Japan's Ayako Uehara and Spain's Beatriz Recari are a shot adrift of Lindberg at six under, while the trio of Jessica Korda, Ha Na Jang and Albane Valenzuela are at five under.

World number two Lexi Thompson says she is still having occasional nightmares 12 months after a rules violation that cost her a four-stroke penalty and victory at the ANA Inspiration in California. There may be no one who was as impressive as Thompson in this opening round. She made no bogeys until her final hole.

"I knew whatever I was challenged with, I could get through it", Thompson said. "I was just really looking forward to just playing this week".

"I just sometimes get it from time to time".

In contrast with her demeanor in recent years, Wie exuded a peaceful, easy feeling during her media availability, punctuating many of her answers with a laughter that called to mind the buoyant teen she was before the game crippled her body and crushed her confidence.

With her booming drives and towering goals, the teenage Wie attracted a huge following - and a sizable endorsement portfolio after she turned professional, just days before her 16th birthday.

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Wie struggled, shooting 3-over 75.

Dame Laura Davies, who retired after an opening 82 in the Kia Classic last week due to an Achilles injury, had a hard round as she signed for a nine-over-par 81. A visit with her coach, Ted Oh, early this week proved fruitful. "Every shot is going to count", she said. She won the Vare Trophy and was the Golf Writers Association of America Player of the Year, but she has had mixed results in this young season. On Thursday, everything worked, especially the putter as she needed only 26 strokes on the greens. That, incidentally, is her only top 20 finish at Rancho Mirage. And Thompson felt like that energy began building during the final round a year ago, when the Mission Hills crowds were chanting her name and offering support following the penalty.

If the Hawaii-born star can take advantage of the course's par-fives this week and put herself in the mix come Sunday, she will surely be a genuine contender for the title. "I feel really comfortable on it". She finished ninth and fourth here as a teenage amateur back in 2003 and 2004 respectively while, as a pro, she has been third and second.

"I learned how strong I was as a person on and off the course", Thompson said.

On No. 9, she put a charge into the crowd when she hit a driver off the deck for her second shot on the 534-yard, par-5, knocking it from 248 yards for a two-putt birdie.

One of Wie's cohorts, Brittany Lincicome, barely recognized her at a tournament this year - because her game had changed quite a bit, too.

"Every time we see each other we list off all the things: How's your ankle, how's your back, how's everything?" This leaderboard is as fun as it gets.

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