American trio set the pace
Kerr, Lincicome and Sala card three-under rounds
Last Updated: July 6, 2012 9:19am
Cristie Kerr: In a three-way tie for the lead
Cristie Kerr, Brittany Lincicome and Lizette Sala defied intense heat and a tough Blackwolf Run layout to share the lead after the first round of the US Women's Open.
The American trio returned three-under 69s at the Kohler venue on a day when only 14 of the 156-player field were below par.
Kerr birdied three of her first seven holes and parred in to record one of just two blemish-free rounds, the other handed in by Spaniard Beatriz Recari.
Lincicome and Salas both birdied two of their last four holes to join Kerr at the top, while 17-year-old sensation Lexi Thompson and Recari were among a group of four players a shot adrift.
Solheim Cup star Suzann Pettersen carded four birdies and two bogeys over an entertaining front nine, but she dropped a shot at the 18th to slip to one under par.
World No.1 Yani Tseng, aiming to become the youngest player to complete a grand slam of majors, has work to do after opening with a 74 that included a double and a triple-bogey.
One of the largest galleries of the first day surrounded Cheyenne Woods, the 21-year-old niece of Tiger, although she struggled on her major debut as she returned a 75.