Saturday, May 26, 2018

Feng's 66 leads LPGA Nabisco

RANCHO MIRAGE, Calif. — Angel Yin was asked if there was a player she wanted to meet this week at the Kraft Nabisco Championship but was too shy to approach.

"Michelle Wie," said Yin, a 15-year-old high school freshman who shot 4-under 68 Thursday to finish a stroke behind her idol after the first round.

"If she sat next to me and said 'Hi' to me, I'd probably run."

The 24-year-old Wie laughed when told about Yin's response.

"It's crazy," Wie said. "These girls are starting to make me feel really old."

Wie ended up a stroke behind leader Shanshan Feng, lipping out a 3-foot par putt on the par-3 17th and settling for par and 67 on the par-5 18th.

Feng shot 66 in perfect morning conditions at Mission Hills in the LPGA's first major championship of the year. The 24-year-old Chinese player had seven birdies and a bogey.

"This morning it was playing easier because there was no wind," Feng said.

Feng won the 2012 LPGA Championship to become the tour's first Chinese winner and had two victories late last year. She tied for 16th last week in the Kia Classic.

Se Ri Pak birdied her final hole to match Wie at 67.

Yin played the event last year, tying for 55th. The California teenager missed the cut last week in the Kia Classic in Carlsbad.

PGA: Phil Mickel­son was among the leaders after shooting bogey-free 4-under 68 in the Houston Open's opening round in Humble, Texas.

Mickelson showed no effects of the muscle pull that forced him to withdraw from last week's Texas Open. The five-time major winner practiced at Augusta National this week in advance of the Masters and is three shots back of leaders Bill Haas and Charley Hoffman, who each shot 7-under 65.

''I'm surprised because I was worried about the Masters,'' Mickelson said. ''I was certainly worried about Houston, but it healed a lot quicker. I felt great (Thursday); didn't feel any pain or discomfort and didn't even think about it.''

Rory McIlroy was five shots back at 2-under 70. Dustin Johnson withdrew after 8-over 80. No official reason was given for his withdrawal.

PALMER DOCUMENTARY: The Golf Channel will televise a three-part documentary on four-time Masters champion Arnold Palmer. Arnie will be shown on three straight nights beginning April 13.