Nelly Korda, Solheim Cup stars near top of LPGA’s CME Group Tour Championship

Nelly Korda, Solheim Cup stars near top of LPGA’s CME Group Tour Championship

Nelly Korda fired off a first-round 4-under 68 at the LPGA’s CME Group Tour Championship to sit tied for 13th.

The former World No. 1 player was not only star on tour to play well Thursday. Many of the Solheim Cup participants also flexed their muscles at the Tiburón Golf Club in Naples, Fla.

Among the Team Europe and Team USA members, six of those ladies sit inside the Top 13. Joining Korda are Anna Nordqvist, Georgia Hall, Jennifer Kupcho, Madelene Sagstrom, and Leona Maguire.

Nordqvist went the lowest among the Solheim ladies as the Swedish golfer shot a 7-under 65 on Thursday. Hall recorded a bogey-free 6-under 66 and Kupcho tallied a 5-under 67. Sagstrom and Maguire are two of the players that share 13th place at 4-under.

Korda made five birdies and one lone bogey on her round. She got off to a decent start, making two birdies on the front nine, keeping that scorecard clean. The 8-time LPGA winner followed that up with a birdie at 10, 12 and 14 before dropping a shot at the par-5 17th.

Other Solheim Cup members Cheyenne Knight, Allisen Corpuz and Celine Boutier sit tied for 22nd at 3-under. Adding these three to the mix gives Team Europe five ladies inside the Top 25 and Team USA four.

Current World No. 1 and Team USA member Lilia Vu shot a 2-under 70 and is tied for 32nd. Other notable Cup alumnus include Ally Ewing, Carlota Ciganda, Rose Zhang, and Megan Khang, who are all at 1-under after the first 18 holes.

All of these ladies are chasing the KPMG Women’s PGA Championship winner, Ruoning Yin, and Nasa Hataoka, who each carded a 9-under 63. Rising star Minjee Lee is one shot back solo third at 8-under.

The aforementioned Boutier leads the Race to the CME Globe points, but Vu’s fourth win of the season last week eliminated a good chunk of that deficit. Those two are ones to watch out for as they eye that season-long title.

Savannah Leigh Richardson is a golf staff writer for SB Nation’s Playing Through. You can follow her on Twitter @SportsGirlSL and Instagram @savannah_leigh_sports for more golf coverage. Be sure to check out @_PlayingThrough too.

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