ROGERS, Ark. – Former University of Arkansas women’s golfer Stacy Lewis heard the largest gallery of the day erupt as she was introduced on the first tee at the P&G Beauty NW Arkansas Championship Friday.
She responded by blasting her drive straight down the middle of the fairway to birdie the first hole. Lewis birded three and four as well quickly moving to the top of the leaderboard after enduring a five hour rain delay as the day began at Pinnacle Country Club.
“I got out to a great start,” said Lewis. “I birdied three of the first four holes. I didn’t hit the ball very well today and I had to scramble a bit out there. I was trying to stay kind of even. It was a great way to start after waiting around all day.”
Lewis struggled on the seventh hole giving a stroke back but made the turn at two-under.
She was solid to start the back nine and was the longest off the tee on 10 dropping her drive in the middle of the fairway. Her second shot was right of the pin and left her an 18-footer for birdie. She ran the putt hard over the top of the cup just missing. She sank the par putt.
It was the fourth of six consecutive pars Lewis counted before she was again in the bird column dropping a stroke on the par five 13th hole.
Lewis remained solid with pars on the remaining holes finishing with a three-under 69. She was tied for seventh when she came off the golf course but nearly half the field still had to finish their rounds.
“I’d like to shoot a little better score the next couple of days,” said Lewis. “I made some good pars today and overall I’m pleased with the round.”
Lewis was joined on the golf course by her father, Dale, who is caddying for her this summer. He was on the bag last weekend at the U.S. Women’s Open when she grabbed the lead in the third round.
“It was fantastic,” said Dale Lewis. “Stacy has been waiting for a year to come back to this event and she’s been looking forward to getting started.”
Arkansas senior-to-be Lucy Nunn was scheduled for a 2:11 p.m. tee time but the delay pushed the Lawton, Okla., native back to a 7:11 p.m. start time. She is expected to play five or six holes before dark. Nunn will finish her round Saturday morning. For more information regarding Razorback women’s golf or University of Arkansas athletics please visit LADYBACKS.COM and www.hogwired.com.