Henderson moves one shot off clubhouse lead at CP Women’s Open

Brooke Henderson, of Smiths Falls, Ont., takes a shot out of the sand trap on the 17th green during the CP Women's Open in Regina, Friday, August, 24, 2018. Jonathan Hayward / The Canadian Press

Canada’s Brooke Henderson has managed to score in different ways at the CP Women’s Open. By doing so, she has set herself up nicely near the top of the leaderboard at the halfway point of the tournament.

Henderson fired a second straight 66 on Friday at the Wascana Country Club to sit one shot behind clubhouse leader Amy Yang of South Korea.

“I hit the ball in good spots and made birdie putts when I had them. I feel like I made the most of today’s round, which is always a great feeling,” Henderson said.

“To be close to the top of the leaderboard heading into the weekend is awesome, especially when you’re here in Canada.”

READ MORE: Three-way tie heading into second round at CP Women’s Open

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Yang shot a 65 to move into top spot at 13-under-par 131. American Angel Yin (67) joined Henderson in second place with several groups still on the course.

“I was hitting it pretty solid out there,” Yang said. “But I gave myself a lot of good chances and I think I made most of them out there.”

Defending champion and world No. 1 Sung Hyun Park of South Korea was three shots off the lead after tying the course record, set a day earlier, with a 64.

She was joined at 10 under by first-round co-leader Nasa Hataoka of Japan (70) and Maria Torres of Puerto Rico (66).

READ MORE: Brooke Henderson ‘excited’ to be back playing in Canada

Starting on the par-4 10th hole, Henderson chipped in on her opening hole for birdie. She added three more birdies over her next five holes before missing a three-foot putt on the 16th for a bogey.

Henderson, a six-time winner on the LPGA Tour, had some luck on her side, too.

Her drive sailed right on the 18th hole, hitting a grandstand post on a bounce before settling in the rough. Henderson found the green with her next shot and two-putted for par.

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Five pars followed after the turn before Henderson found a late groove. She hit a tricky four-foot downhill putt on the sixth hole and drained a 22-footer from the fringe for another birdie on the seventh.

“Definitely have a lot of confidence in (my putter) this week, which is always amazing when you can depend on that club,” she said. “But I think overall, everything is kind of going really well.”

The 20-year-old from Smiths Falls, Ont., capped her round by going up-and-down from the side of the ninth green for birdie to the delight of the partisan gallery.

READ MORE: Canada’s Brooke Henderson headlines the field for the CP Women’s Open

“Brooke is almost like Canada’s Tiger Woods,” said Park, who played with Henderson and Sweden’s Anna Nordqvist.

“I was really surprised at how many fans came out to support Brooke today. To witness that was pretty awesome and it helped me enjoy today’s round.”

Americans Mariah Stackhouse (69) and Austin Ernst (69) were at 9-under-par 135, one shot ahead of Nordqvist (66) and several others.

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It was hot and sunny again on the 6,675-yard course but the wind picked up considerably later in the day. First-round co-leaders Ariya Jutanugarn of Thailand and Colombia’s Mariajo Uribe had afternoon tee times.

READ MORE: Mariajo Uribe sets new course record at Wascana Country Club with 64

Anne-Catherine Tanguay of Quebec City (71), one of 16 Canadians in the field, was a good bet to make the cut at 3-under 141. The early projected cut line was 2 under.

Play continues through Sunday at the US$2.25-million event.

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