Lewis Jumps Ahead by Two in Singapore


Stacy Lewis carded a 6-under 66 to take a two-shot lead after 36 holes of the HSBC Women's Champions. The $1.4 million LPGA Tour event began Thursday on the 6,600-yard Serapong Course at Sentosa Golf Club in Singapore.

Lewis, a 28-year-old who grew up in Texas and became an All-American at Arkansas, carded three birdies on the front nine and three more on the back to reach 11-under 133, two strokes ahead of South Koreans Na Yeon Choi (66), Chella Choi (67) and Sun Young Yoo (68), fellow American Paula Creamer (67), Thailand's Ariya Jutanugarn (66) and Spaniard Azahara Munoz.

Munoz took the first-round lead with a 7-under 65, but carded a 70 Friday.

Lewis, whose four victories in 2012 led to her being named the LPGA's Player of the Year, told reporters she's learned to control her emotions in tournament play. "I've had leads and each one is a little bit different. Last week my putter just went sideways, I don't know what happened," she said.

"But I feel a lot more comfortable with my putter this week. You just can't try too hard, and the biggest thing for me is being very patient. You can't force things and I think last week I definitely was trying to force some putts and hit them too hard and through breaks."

With a victory this week, Lewis will inch closer to Yani Tseng, the No. 1-ranked player in the world for the past few years. Lewis admitted she has the 24-year-old Taiwanese superstar in her sights. "Middle of last year, one of my goals was to track down Yani - it still is," Lewis said.

"Each week you kind of have to build off of it. I didn't play well last weekend but I still finished third and that helps me in that move to number one. So I just keep chipping away at it and giving myself chances to win. I've been doing a good job of that, and I just keep knocking on the door."

Tseng, who opened with a 68, carded a 73 Friday and is now tied for 21st place at 141.

Creamer was in a vehicle with Suzann Pettersen and Ai Miyazato involved in a five-car accident Sunday night. Creamer suffered pains to her neck, back, arm and shoulder, and had to pull out of a practice round.

But the California is soldiering on. "It takes me a little while to get used to my arm out there," Creamer said. "It's really my shoulder that's kind of bugging me . . . it gets loosened up as the day goes on."

Miyazato wasn't so lucky, as her injuries forced the Japanese player to withdraw from the tournament before the first round. Pettersen has posted rounds of 73 and 70 and is in 35th place.

Defending champion Angela Stanford continued her struggles this week, carding two straight 76s to fall to second-to-last place in the standings.

For all the scores, visit http://www.lpgascoring.com/public/Leaderboard.


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