Marshall Shares Big Apple Lead

Friday, July 26th 2002, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

NEW ROCHELLE, N.Y. (AP) _ Kathryn Marshall used a week away from golf to bounce back from what she called her worst decision.

The 35-year-old Scot shot a 3-under-par 68 Thursday and was tied for the first-round lead of the Big Apple Classic with Minny Yeo. Marshall has one win in 10 years on the LPGA Tour, the Jamie Farr Classic in 1995.

She finished tied for 15th at the Evian Masters in mid-June and was planning to take a break.

``My husband and I were discussing whether or not to take a week off. We decided to keep going, and that was the worst mistake we ever made,'' she said. ``I missed four cuts in a row. The last one, I missed by one when I thought we were in, and that's hard to take. So it's been a tough month.''

This time, she made the right decision.

``I took off last week and recharged,'' Marshall said. ``I went to Canada and went boating and jet-skiing, everything but golf.''

Marshall is 79th on the money list and Yeo is 150th. They were one stroke in front of a group of four and two strokes in front of another 11 players, including Karrie Webb.

Marshall was the only player to get to 4 under at Wykagyl Country Club, and she did it with a birdie on the par-3 No. 4, her 13th hole of the day. But bogeys on Nos. 7 and 8 knocked her out of the lead. She made a 3-foot birdie putt on the final hole to get back to 3 under.

``That was huge psychologically, a huge boost for me,'' she said. ``I always watch the leaderboards, it's good to know where you are. I haven't been up there much lately, though.''

Neither has Yeo, who has won $9,906 in three events this year for a total of $17,955 in her third year on tour. The 68 was the best round of her career.

``All day I had pretty far from the pin, so I made a lot of putts,'' said Yeo, a 30-year-old South Korean who joined this field Monday when countrywoman Se Ri Pak withdrew. ``This is my third year, so I think I better play better this time.''

The group at 69 included Kelli Kuehne, Sherri Steinhauer, Kris Tschetter and Silvia Cavalleri. Among those joining Webb at 70 were Meg Mallon, Beth Bauer, Hee-Won Han and Jennifer Rosales.

Webb missed about a 6-foot birdie putt on her final hole.

``All in all, 1 under is pretty good,'' Webb said. ``The greens were far too bumpy and things got a little tough in the afternoon with the breeze.''

This was the first tournament for Annika Sorenstam and Juli Inkster, ranked 1-2 on the money list, since the U.S. Open on July 7. Inkster overtook Sorenstam in the final round for her second Open title. Both took the last two weeks off and Sorenstam had the better return with a 71, while Inkster was at 75.

Sorenstam was 2 under through 11 holes but finished at even par, missing about a 6-foot birdie putt on her final hole.

``I had some chances but just couldn't get anything going,'' she said. ``I played some great golf and hit some great shots. There's a long way to go.''

Inkster bogeyed the par-5 18th.

``I just never really got anything going but I'm not too far out it,'' she said.

Inkster was at even par when she got a 7 on the par-12th.

``I hit it left off the tee and had a little hook and it hit a root and popped out of bounds,'' she said.

The tournament is sponsored by Sybase and has a purse of $950,000 with a first prize of $142,500.