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Leona Maguire embraces Irish spirit at LPGA Mediheal

Leona Maguire at 2021 ANA Inspiration
Leona Maguire feels right at home with the lead at the LPGA Mediheal Championship at Lake Merced Golf Club in Daly City, Calif.

Irishwoman says Northern California feels ‘similar to home’ after 7-under 65 at Lake Merced Golf Club as she seeks 1st LPGA victory

Northern California feels a lot like home to Ireland’s Leona Maguire.

“The weather is similar to home,” Maguire said Thursday after she shot 7-under 65 for the first-round lead at the LPGA Mediheal Championship at Lake Merced Golf Club in Daly City. “Even the golf course is similar to home. It’s very green and sort of tree-lined, a little bit like what we would get at home."

Maguire won the first of her two developmental tour titles in the area, at the Symetra Tour's 2019 Windsor Golf Classic, about 80 minutes north via U.S. 101.

“Northern California has been very good to me,” she said.

It might be even better this weekend.

Starting on the back nine at Lake Merced, Maguire raced to 4 under through six holes. Despite two bogeys, including a 6 on the par-5 ninth, her final hole, she tied the 18-hole scoring record.

“Got off to a really nice start,” Maguire said. “Birdied my opening two holes, which kind of settled me in quite nicely. In general, it was a pretty stress-free day.”

Maguire, who tied for second in April at the Lotte Championship, is looking for her first LPGA victory. Thailand’s Jasmine Suwannapura held solo second at 6-under 66. American Alison Lee, who grew up in Los Angeles and attended UCLA, shared third with Switzerland’s Albane Valenzuela at 68.

The tournament is the LPGA’s second consecutive week in the Bay Area, after the U.S. Women’s Open was played at nearby Olympic Club.

(For scores, click here.)

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