SUN CITY WEST, Ariz., Mar. 4, 2017 – Barb Moxness took a one-shot lead in today’s first round of the Walgreens Charity Classic. Moxness toured Grandview Golf Course with a score of 5-under 67 to grab a one-stroke advantage over defending champion Juli Inkster, Betsy King, Rosie Jones, Michelle McGann and Barb Mucha, all at 4-under 68.
Moxness put on a short-game display in a round that included a pair of 15-foot birdie putts, a chip-in for eagle on the eighth hole, a 10-foot eagle chance on No. 10 (where she made birdie) and a two-foot birdie on the 10th. Her only bogey came on No. 15, where she flew the green on her approach shot.
“The greens are hard,” said Moxness of Edina, Minn., a two-time winner on The Legends Tour. “You really have to figure out where you are going to land the ball because it is going to run. That’s the challenge.”
Another challenge was staying patient, said Moxness, who relied on her caddie, Minnesota Golf Hall of Famer Claudia Pilot, to help with club selection.
“I am not necessarily a patient person,” admitted Moxness, who recorded two runner-up finishes during 10 years on the LPGA Tour before leaving the tour to start a family. “My caddie is definitely helping me there.”
Frustrated with not capitalizing on the course’s par-5 holes, Inkster was looking for a spark. The Californian got it on the 12th hole when she struck a 6-iron dead into the wind to about 20 feet from the flagstick and made the putt. That birdie moved her into a tie for the lead with Moxness.
But once again, she wasn’t able to take advantage of her length on a par-5, making par on No. 13 after landing just short of the green on her second shot. Two holes later, Inkster three-putted for bogey on No. 15 to fall behind Moxness by one stroke.
“You have to go out there and make birdies,” said Inkster, an LPGA Hall of Fame member who still plays on the LPGA Tour. “The hardest part about this course is judging what the ball is going to do on the green. Is it going to stop or is it going to roll?”
“But I’m right there,” added Inkster. “I just have to play better.”
Fellow LPGA Hall of Fame member Betsy King, who lives in the Phoenix area, hit a pitching wedge to 12 feet on No. 17 and made the birdie to join the chaser group at four under.
“I putted really well, so I’m excited to have a chance tomorrow,” said King.
McGann posted a bogey-free round in Saturday’s first round of The Legends Tour’s season opener.
Legends Hall of Fame member Jan Stephenson finished her opening round with two birdies to lead the Legends Honors Division (for players age 63 and over) at even-par 72.
Jane Blalock and Judy Dickinson are tied for second at 2-over 74.
“The greens were very firm and I hit over two of them and left myself really challenging shots,” said Stephenson, a native of Australia. “I think I need to play a little more defensively tomorrow.”
For Saturday’s first-round leaderboard, check out http://bit.ly/2mof1ys
Gates for Sunday’s final round will open at 8 a.m., with tee times starting at 8:30 a.m.
Daily tickets are $15 at the gate and $10 at area Walgreens stores. Kids age 13-under, as well as active military with I.D., will be admitted free.
Listed below are the final-round pairings for the Walgreens Charity Classic:
8:30 AM Patty Sheehan | Lori West
8:40 AM Patti Rizzo | Kelly Loeb (a)
8:50 AM Allison Finney | Wendy Doolan
9:00 AM Tina Tombs | Janet Anderson
9:10 AM Jane Crafter | Pat Bradley
9:20 AM Hollis Stacy | Jenny Lidback
9:30 AM Nancy Scranton | Kris Tschetter
9:40 AM Alicia Dibos | Marilyn Lovander
9:50 AM Barb Bunkowsky | Kathryn Young Robyn
10:00 AM Lisa Grimes | Anne Marie Palli
10:10 AM Val Skinner | Laurie Rinker
10:20 AM Kim Eaton (a) | Cindy Rarick
10:30 AM Jean Bartholomew | Jerilyn Britz (LHD)
10:40 AM Sandra Palmer (LHD) | Sandra Haynie (LHD)
10:50 AM Jane Blalock (LHD) | Shelley Hamlin (LHD)
11:00 AM Jan Stephenson | Judy Dickinson (LHD)
11:10 AM Danielle Ammaccapane | Amy Alcott
11:20 AM Donna Andrews | Brandie Burton
11:30 AM Moira Dunn-Bohls | Becky Iverson
11:40 AM Lorie Kane | Pat Hurst
11:50 AM Karen Davies | Cindy Figg-Currier
12:00 PM Christa Johnson | Trish Johnson
12:10 PM Lori Atsedes | Martha Nause
12:20 PM Nicole Jeray | Michele Redman
12:30 PM Betsy King| Juli Inkster
12:40 PM Michelle McGann | Rosie Jones
12:50 PM Barb Moxness | Barb Mucha
*Legends Honors Division
For more information about The Legends Tour, visit www.thelegendstour.com.
About the Legends Tour
The Legends Tour is the official senior tour of the LPGA. The tour began in 2000 by LPGA professionals to showcase the talents of some of the greatest women’s golfers of all time. The Legends Tour has more than 120 members, including 14 LPGA and World Golf Hall of Fame members. Legends Tour players have over 750 combined LPGA Tour victories, including 84 major championships. In its 15 seasons, The Legends Tour has awarded more than $14 million in prize money and helped raise over $19 million for charity. The Legends Tour has hosted events in Arizona, Arkansas, Connecticut, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Indiana, Iowa, Maine, Mississippi, Massachusetts, Michigan, New Hampshire, New Jersey, South Carolina, Tennessee, Wisconsin, Japan and Australia. For additional information on The Legends Tour, log on to www.thelegendstour.com
Contact: Sue Fracker, The Legends Tour, firstname.lastname@example.org and 617-513-4716.