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Sports Golf

Lucy Li, 11, has a rough start at U.S. Women's Open

Lucy Li, the 11-year-old playing the Women's U.S. Open, gets off to a troublesome start in the first round

So far, not so good.

Lucy Li, the 11-year-old who made history on Thursday as the youngest player ever to tee off at the U.S. Women's Open, struggled through her first round at Pinehurst No. 2.

Starting at No. 10, she carded a double-bogey right off the bat. Then came a bogey at No. 13 and another double at No. 16.

Li bogeyed her last hole, the par-3 9th, when she missed the green short and left and didn't get up and down. She finished with an 8-over-par 78 highlighted by birdies on the first and fifth holes.

The Northern California schoolgirl rebounded with a couple of birdies on the front nine but added a triple-bogey to stand at 7-over with one hole to play. The bunkers were giving her problems as she was unable to get up and down in numerous attempts.

Earlier this week, No. 1-ranked Stacy Lewis questioned whether Li should be playing at the Open.

"I just like to see kids learn how to win before they come get beat up out here," Lewis said.

Lexi Thompson, who also made her Open debut as a pre-teen, offered this perspective.

"Take it as a learning experience," Thompson said.  "If this is what she wants to do for her life, she will learn off the other players and see what she needs to improve on."

Lewis and amateur Brooke Henderson of Canada led the field at 2-under with the afternoon pairings ready to start play. 

Copyright © 2014, The Baltimore Sun
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