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McGill, Park and Jang share first-round lead at Navistar LPGA Classic

Jill McGill, Jane Park and Jeong Jang shot 7-under 65s on Thursday for a share of the Navistar LPGA Classic lead, while top-ranked Lorena Ochoa was two strokes back in her first event in a month.

Ochoa played her first competitive round since tying for sixth in the Safeway Classic on Aug. 24, her fourth top-seven finish in a row, but seventh straight winless start. She opened the year with six victories in nine starts, including four straight.

Safeway winner Cristie Kerr and Janice Moodie opened with 66s on the
links-style Senator Course at the Robert Trent Jones Golf Trail’s Capitol Hill complex. Sandra Gal, Katie Futcher, Ji Young Oh and Louise Friberg matched Ochoa with 67s.

Sweden’s Maria Hjorth, the winner last year in the inaugural event, opened with a 76. Angela Stanford, coming off a victory Sept. 14 in the Bell Micro LPGA Classic in Mobile, withdrew before the round. No reason was given for her decision.

McGill, winless in 13 seasons on the tour, had seven birdies in a bogey-free round.

Park had eight birdies and a bogey.

She three-putted for the bogey on the par-5 17th.

Jang also had a bogey-free round.

She has two LPGA Tour wins, the 2005 Women’s British Open and 2006 Wegmans LPGA.

Leaderboard – Round 1:

1. Jill McGill                      65 – 7
Jane Park                    65 – 7
Jeong Jang                  65 – 7
4. Janice Moodie              66 – 6
Cristie Kerr                  66 – 6
6. Sandra Gal                  67 – 5
Katie Futcher               67 – 5
Ji Young Oh                 67 – 5
Lorena Ochoa              67 – 5
Louise Friberg              67 – 5