Munoz, Ernst lead LPGA's Kingsmill Championship

Azahara Munoz during Thursday's first round of the LPGA's Kingsmill Championship.

Each closing strong down the stretch, Austin Ernst and Azahara Munoz shot 65 Thursday to lead the LPGA's Kingsmill Championship.

Munoz birdied four of her last seven holes to end a bogey-free round, while Ernst bogeyed after making the turn but eagled No. 3 and birdied Nos. 7 and 9 on the way in.

A recent adjustment in her mental approach earned Munoz's attention after her round.

"I've been having a much better attitude," said Munoz, who lost a playoff to Paula Creamer in March. "When I miss a shot, I don't let it get to me so much like I used to. I used to get pretty upset, and that really hurt me."

Munoz and Ernst seemed to agree that winds made things a little tougher.

"Gave myself a lot of looks, hit a lot of greens and made it really easy on myself out there on a day when it was pretty windy and it could kind of get away from you a little bit."

Hee Young Park is a shot back, citing a strong putting round. Two shots back and T-4 are seven players including defending champion Cristie Kerr and Kraft Nabisco Championship winner Lexi Thompson.

In the battle for the world No. 1 ranking, Stacy Lewis and Lydia Ko shot 70 to open the tournament among 19 players T-29 at 1 under. Either could pass Inbee Park, who is not playing this week.

– Associated Press contributed

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