Recari takes Kia Classic lead

Associated Press  |  Last updated March 22, 2013
Beatriz Recari shot a bogey-free 5-under 67 on Friday to take the lead after two rounds at the Kia Classic. The Spaniard's two-round total of 8-under 136 gave her a one-stroke lead over Paula Creamer and Karrie Webb. Creamer shot a 68, and Webb had a 70 on the hilly Aviara course designed by Arnold Palmer. First-round leader Jane Park shot a 69 and was tied at 6-under with Cristie Kerr, I.K. Kim, Inbee Park and Haeji Kang. Stacy Lewis, playing her first tournament as the world's top-ranked player, carded her second straight 70 and was four strokes off the lead. On cold mornings, Creamer said she still feels discomfort in her neck and shoulder after a high-speed crash a month ago in Bangkok. She was in the fifth group to tee off on No. 10 Friday morning and did just fine on Aviara's hills and big greens. ''My shoulder starts to bug me a little bit, but overall, I feel a lot better,'' said Creamer, whose best finish this year was third at Singapore the week after the accident. ''My neck is not 100 percent, but I'm not hurting myself when I'm out here and it's not affecting my game 100 percent.'' She and her caddie were hurt when the car that was taking them to the airport in a caravan of players after the LPGA Thailand tournament was involved in a chain-reaction crash. Four weeks later, ''I'm a nightmare in the car,'' Creamer said. ''I'm awful. I have to drive or I have to be in the back seat where I can't see. It's getting better but still, I get a lot of anxiety before I even get into the car. My mom, my dad, they've been really good with me because I've been like, `Watch out, watch out.' I have to just sit there and I put my music on and I just close my eyes.'' Creamer capped her round with a birdie putt on the par-4 ninth. Her 68 followed an opening-round 69. ''I feel good,'' Creamer said. ''I'm ready for the weekend. Hopefully I can go out and keep doing what I'm doing and stay in my own world and see what happens on Sunday.'' Her last LPGA Tour win was at the U.S. Women's Open in 2010. Recari was two strokes better than her opening 69. ''I had great momentum from yesterday,'' the Spaniard said. ''I played really well. I felt like I left some putts out there. It was kind of shaky putting on the greens yesterday, so today I started with a good opportunity.'' She had birdie chances on Nos. 2-3 but they both lipped out. She birdied Nos. 5-6, ''and that got me a little bit more positive and just kind of keeping that momentum going.'' She then rolled in three straight birdie putts on 9-11. ''I just kind of cruised from there. I'm so very happy. I just played really solid.'' Michelle Wie shot another 74 and missed the cut for the second straight week and the third time in five tournaments this year.
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