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Uehara cards 4-under 68 in opening round at Portland Classic

Kyodo

Ayako Uehara shot a 4-under 68 and tied for four-way fifth after the first round of the Cambia Portland Classic on Thursday, three strokes off the pace.

Uehara carded five birdies and a bogey at the par-72 Columbia Edgewater Country Club. Canadian 18-year-old Brooke Henderson, the winner here last year, leads with a 65.

Uehara, who led after the first round at the NW Arkansas Championship last week before finishing 25th, made another good start, sinking three straight birdies from No. 11. She birdied No. 15 from 49 feet, and her last of the day came after the turn on No. 1 with a 23-feet putt.

“It was almost a perfect round of golf up till a point,” Uehara said. “My feel for my shots is really good and I’m hitting my putts where I want them to go.”

The 32-year-old failed to add to her score as wayward shooting led to her sole bogey on No. 5. She three-putted the par-5 No. 7 despite reaching the green with her second shot.

“I need to stop dropping strokes on holes like those,” she said. “I’ll try to make the right judgment in each situation I’m in and rack up birdies.”

After starting her first round on a cool morning, different circumstances await her second round with an afternoon start.

Sakura Yokomine hit a 71 for a share of the 26th, but Mika Miyazato and Ai Miyazato struggled to place 80th and 105th, respectively.

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