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Ko, 17, takes No. 1 despite blowing lead

(AP Photo/The Star-Banner, Bruce Ackerman)

OCALA, Fla. (AP) During a closing stretch that featured one of the more tumultuous final hours in recent LPGA Tour history, teen wunderkind Lydia Ko faced a series of tough predicaments. But a query that came after the final round gave her the biggest pause of all.

After reclaiming the lead late Saturday to set herself up for a double payoff of sorts, the 17-year-old double-bogeyed the 71st hole in the inaugural Coates Golf Championship to lose by a shot to Na Yeon Choi.

However, Ko secured a piece of history that could be remembered long after the details of the tour's season opener are forgotten. The transplanted New Zealander became the youngest player of either gender to climb to world No. 1, breaking the record set by Tiger Woods by almost four years.

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Money Leaders: LPGA
Rank Player Earnings
1 N.Choi $225,000
2 H.Jang $104,587
3 J.Korda $104,587
4 L.Ko $104,587
5 A.Yang $61,979
6 A.Walshe $50,710
7 B.Lang $42,446
8 S.Lewis $33,681
9 S.Yoo $33,681
10 S.Ryu $33,681
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