Japan’s Mamiko Higa shot a bogey-free 6-under 65 for the lowest round in a U.S. Women’s Open debut Thursday and took a one-shot lead over American amateur Gina Kim and Germany’s Esther Henseleit.
Kim, a sophomore on Duke’s golf team, holed out for eagle from a fairway bunker on her next-to-last hole, the eighth at the Country Club of Charleston, then had a two-putt birdie to close her round of 66.
The 25-year-old Higa tied for the third-lowest round in U.S. Women’s Open history. Helen Alfredsson holds the record with a 63 in the opening round in 1994.
Celine Boutier of France shot 67.
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