The 18-year-old struck a seven-iron from 152 yards at the
par-three 13th, her fourth hole of the day at Sahalee Country
Club in Sammamish, and then watched in delight as her ball
disappeared into the cup.
"I pulled my shot a little but it caught the left apron and
funneled right in," Henderson told reporters after ending the
day two ahead of American Christina Kim and South Korean Kim
In-kyung in the second women's major of the year.
"The crowd went nuts, so it was pretty cool," said world number
four Henderson, who won a 2016 Kia K900 car thanks to her ace.
"It gave me a boost going into some tough holes. Three more
rounds to go."
Henderson, who clinched her first LPGA Tour title last August in
Portland on a similar Pacific Northwest course layout, relied on
a red-hot putter as she hit just 10 of 14 fairways and 10 of 18
greens, totaling only 23 putts during the round.
Six players opened with 70s, among them red-hot Thai Ariya
Jutanugarn, who has won on her past three LPGA starts,
Australian Minjee Lee and Norway's Suzann Pettersen.
New Zealand's world number one Lydia Ko, seeking her third
career major after landing the ANA Inspiration in March, was a
further stroke back after carding a 71.
Ko played in the morning alongside American standouts Lexi
Thompson and Stacy Lewis but neither of them could keep pace.
Lewis carded a 73 while Thompson struggled to a 75.
"My ball striking was good today, I just missed a few fairways,"
Ko told ESPN. "(The course) is really tough. The fairways and
greens have really dried out. I just have to play smart."
South Korean world number two Park In-bee, the three-time
defending champion at the event, capped a memorable day by
qualifying for the LPGA Hall of Fame after shooting a one-over
Park, who has been battling an ongoing injury in her left thumb
which forced her to withdraw from her previous two starts,
became the 24th member and youngest to qualify since compatriot
Pak Se-ri at age 27.
"It feels surreal. I have been dreaming of myself being in the
Hall of Fame so many times," Park said. "This truly feels
amazing. Iím really going to enjoy today and there are so many
people that helped me get here."
(Writing by Jahmal Corner in Los Angeles; Editing by Mark
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