Kane feels she's still able

DON BRENNAN -- Sun Media

, Last Updated: 12:12 PM ET

Down on the leaderboard, Lorie Kane says she's not out of this tournament -- not by a long shot.

If she can continue to improve her short strokes, she may be right.

The pride of P.E.I. and obvious fan favourite at the CN Canadian Women's Open, Kane's recent putting woes continued to haunt her during yesterday's first round. All told, she used the straight blade 33 times, but still finished with a 2-over 74 that left her tied for 73rd place.

"A lot of really good shots, but not so many really good putts," Kane said in evaluating her first round, before later adding: "I'm right in there. I don't think by any stretch I'm out of this.

"I'm just going to go spend some time on the practice green, keep working at it -- having some fun and being imaginative," she said.

"The one thing our leader (Lorena Ochoa) is, is imaginative with the way she rolls the rock. I'm going to get on that train and ride it."

Kane left the station yesterday looking very much like she was going to be riding up front with the leaders. But on each of the first four holes, she missed makeable birdie putts, then three-putted each of the par 3s on the front to make the turn at 2-over.

She dropped to plus-3 after chunking a chip on the 13th, then stayed there before making her first birdie of the day on No. 18.

To get a four on that par 5, Kane drained a shortie, then waved her arms in an over-stated celebration that said one word: Finally.

"I got it rolling a little better on the back nine," said Kane. "I was really pleased with the way I was hitting the ball, from the first tee on.

"It's a funny thing, golf," she added, when asked about her confidence with the putter. "I feel pretty good about everything with my game right now, but some days you just don't have the feel out there. You have to be patient, and you have to work through it."

Also still feeling confident about her chances is Hamilton's Alena Sharp, who carded a 1-under 71.

"I started out a little rough, but I got back to playing the way I was a month ago," said Sharp, who is tied for 19th. "I'm not that far off. I can shoot a 66 out there. I'm looking forward to playing (this morning) on fresh greens."

Sharp, who had made a semi-serious plea through the media a day earlier in an attempt to get Ottawa Senators head covers to replace her worn Toronto Maple Leaf club protectors, was still using the Toronto brand yesterday.

"The Leafs e-mailed me and said, 'why do you want to switch?' " Sharp joked.

Last night, a tournament volunteer actually e-mailed the Sun to say he wanted to buy Sharp some Senators head covers, but couldn't find any in the city.

In the end, he bought Sharp a Senators gold ball marker and gave it to her on the third hole.


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