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Kerr leads by three on LPGA Tour

  |   Nov. 11, 2010 at 9:03 PM
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GUADALAJARA, Mexico, Nov. 11 (UPI) -- Cristie Kerr, who has been in a battle for the No. 1 world ranking this year, took a three-shot lead Thursday after one round of the Lorena Ochoa Invitational.

Kerr fired a course-record 64 at the Guadalajara Country Club, breaking the old mark of 65 first set by Brittany Lang in 2008. Stacy Lewis was alone in second place with a 67.

Kerr went into the tournament ranked third in the world after having been briefly No. 1 this year. Current No. 1 Jiyai Shin is not playing this week while No. 2 Yani Tseng shot a 76 to open the tournament.

Na Yeon Choi, ranked fourth in the world, had a 68 and shared third place with Katherine Hull, Paula Creamer and Ai Miyazato.

Miyazato was also No. 1 in the rankings for a time this season, but has slipped to sixth place.

Defending champion Michelle Wie shot a 78 Thursday and then withdrew with a back injury.

"I was very excited to be here, but unfortunately I can't play anymore," Wie said. "We took an MRI and I have two little cysts near my spine and a little disc bulge. It's nothing major, but it's just something I can't play with right now."

Ochoa, the tournament host who is playing for the first time since announcing her retirement in May, shot a 74.

"It's good to be back," Ochoa said. "It would be better if I had a better round today."

Kerr's round was highlighted by a stretch of six birdies in a seven-hole stretch beginning at the ninth.

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