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A wiser Pressel takes Wegmans lead

By BEN DOBBIN
Associated Press

ROCHESTER, N.Y. — Morgan Pressel, intensifying her practice routines as she moves beyond her teens, shot a 7-under 65 on Friday to take a one-stroke lead over Suzann Pettersen midway through the Wegmans LPGA.

“You always have to be working … harder because otherwise you are going to be passed pretty quickly out here,” Pressel, the youngest major winner in LPGA history, said after a second bogey-free round broke open a leaderboard logjam and got her to 10-under 134.

Defending champion Lorena Ochoa shot 70 to drop into a tie for 17th at 2 under. Annika Sorenstam (72), who is stepping away from the tour at the end of the season, finished her second round at 1 over and narrowly avoided being cut out of weekend play for the first time in 40 events dating to May 2006.

Pettersen, a five-time tour winner last year, chipped in for birdie on No. 9 — her last hole — to match Pressel’s 65 and get to 9 under.

“I’m making a few adjustments right now to give myself … a bit more consistency,” the Norwegian star said. “I’ve been working hard on my game and not trying to get too hard on myself.”

Inbee Park finished with a bogey to drop into third place at 8 under alongside Japan’s Ai Miyazato (68). Both had been lodged in a seven-way tie for the lead after Thursday’s opening round.

Christina Kim (67) and Cristie Kerr (70) were two shots back at 6 under.

“I’ve worked very hard on my game to get to this point,” said Kerr, who is preparing for her title defense in the U.S. Women’s Open next week. “It’s nice that it’s starting to peak a little bit … going into the U.S. Open.”

Michelle Wie, who is ranked 200th in the world and made the tournament field on a sponsor’s exemption, matched her opening-round 71 to get to 2 under.

Vicky Hurst missed the cut with rounds of 77 and 71 after winning the Michelob Ultra Duramed Futures Players Championship on Sunday for her second Futures Tour victory of the year. She turned 18 on Thursday.

Pressel, who turned 20 four weeks ago, battled early to tame the tricky, tree-lined Locust Hill course. She sank 10-foot and 18-foot putts on Nos. 3 and 4 to save par. She ran up five of her six birdies on the back nine with precise iron-play setting up an array of birdie chances.

“I started hitting good shots and then was just missing the putts,” she said. “I finally got a few to go in.”

Pressel has nine top-10 finishes since she broke through with a win at the Kraft Nabisco in 2007. Her form dipped this spring — she missed four cuts — as she struggled to add distance off the tee and improve her short game. But she tied for second at the Sybase Classic in May and tied for sixth two weeks ago at the LPGA Championship.

“I worked pretty hard on my golf swing and I’m trying to make a couple of really big changes,” she said. “I probably didn’t work quite as hard on my short game … so that probably is what set me back for a few events.

“If you are not practicing those kinds of (chip) shots, you are going to lose it quickly and I learned that.”

Kim said she benefited from watching the “methodical way” in which Tiger Woods won the U.S. Open last weekend despite his knee injury.

“I’ve been so impatient in years past where you are hitting it to 5 feet every time, and you miss one, then you hit your tee shot in the trees on the next hole,” said Kim, who has five top-10s this year. “It just mounts up, so I’m kind of tired with that.”

The $2 million tournament, sandwiched between two majors, drew 88 of the top 100 money winners. Ochoa, who won in Rochester in 2005 and 2007, is seeking her seventh win of the season.

Scores with relation to par from the second round of the Wegmans LPGA,played June 20 at the par-72, 6,328-yard Locust Hill Country Club inPittsford, N.Y.:

  1. Morgan Pressel 69-65–134

    -10 2. Suzann Pettersen 70-65–135

    -9 3. Inbee Park 68-68–136

    -8 3. Ai Miyazato 68-68–136

    -8 5. Christina Kim 71-67–138

    -6 5. Cristie Kerr 68-70–138

    -6 7. Meena Lee 74-65–139

    -5 7. Jeong Jang 68-71–139

    -5 7. Karin Sjodin 70-69–139

    -5 10. Jimin Jeong 68-72–140

    -4 10. Candie Kung 71-69–140

    -4 12. Irene Cho 74-67–141

    -3 12. Il Mi Chung 71-70–141

    -3 12. Eun-Hee Ji 70-71–141

    -3 12. Natalie Gulbis 72-69–141

    -3 12. Yani Tseng 72-69–141

    -3 17. Becky Lucidi 69-73–142

    -2 17. Ashli Bunch 72-70–142

    -2 17. Soo-Yun Kang 68-74–142

    -2 17. Heather Young 74-68–142

    -2 17. Catriona Matthew 73-69–142

    -2 17. Lorena Ochoa 72-70–142

    -2 17. Helen Alfredsson 69-73–142

    -2 17. Michele Redman 72-70–142

    -2 17. Michelle Wie 71-71–142

    -2 17. Young-A Yang 69-73–142

    -2 17. Kyeong Bae 69-73–142

    -2 17. Sandra Gal 71-71–142

    -2 17. Liz Janangelo 70-72–142

    -2 17. Shi Hyun Ahn 76-66–142

    -2 17. Moira Dunn 71-71–142

    -2 32. Janice Moodie 74-69–143

    -1 32. Karine Icher 73-70–143

    -1 32. Hee-Won Han 69-74–143

    -1 32. Sun Young Yoo 74-69–143

    -1 32. Seon Hwa Lee 74-69–143

    -1 32. Laura Diaz 70-73–143

    -1 32. Stacy Prammanasudh 72-71–143

    -1 32. Leta Lindley 71-72–143

    -1 32. Paula Creamer 74-69–143

    -1 32. Giulia Sergas 75-68–143

    -1 32. Patricia Meunier-Lebouc 71-72–143

    -1 32. Paige Mackenzie 73-70–143

    -1 44. Heather Daly-Donofrio 74-70–144

    E 44. Allison Hanna-Williams 74-70–144

    E 44. Na On Min 69-75–144

    E 44. Shanshan Feng 75-69–144

    E 44. Angela Stanford 72-72–144

    E 44. Sophie Gustafson 72-72–144

    E 44. Mi Hyun Kim 73-71–144

    E 44. Jane Park 70-74–144

    E 44. Sherri Steinhauer 73-71–144

    E 44. Reilley Rankin 72-72–144

    E 54. Marisa Baena 71-74–145
    + 1 54. Meredith Duncan 74-71–145
    + 1 54. Jamie Hullett 72-73–145
    + 1 54. Erica Blasberg 72-73–145
    + 1 54. H.J. Choi 74-71–145
    + 1 54. Emily Bastel 75-70–145
    + 1 54. Tracy Hanson 73-72–145
    + 1 54. Jennifer Rosales 71-74–145
    + 1 54. Katie Futcher 73-72–145
    + 1 54. Laura Davies 79-66–145
    + 1 54. Teresa Lu 71-74–145
    + 1 54. Song-Hee Kim 68-77–145
    + 1 54. Maria Hjorth 73-72–145
    + 1 54. Annika Sorenstam 73-72–145
    + 1 54. Jimin Kang 75-70–145
    + 1 54. In-Kyung Kim 71-74–145
    + 1 54. Marcy Hart 75-70–145
    + 1 54. Amy Hung 74-71–145
    + 1 54. Michelle Ellis 71-74–145
    + 1 • • •

    Missed the cut

    73. Wendy Doolan 74-72–146
    + 2 73. Su A Kim 72-74–146
    + 2 73. Pat Hurst 72-74–146
    + 2 73. Ji Young Oh 72-74–146
    + 2 73. Katherine Hull 73-73–146
    + 2 73. Dina Ammaccapane 73-73–146
    + 2 73. Alena Sharp 78-68–146
    + 2 73. Nancy Scranton 71-75–146
    + 2 73. Hannah Jun 74-72–146
    + 2 73. Danielle Downey 74-72–146
    + 2 73. Sarah Lee 75-71–146
    + 2 73. Becky Morgan 73-73–146
    + 2 85. Mhairi McKay 74-73–147
    + 3 85. Kris Tschetter 79-68–147
    + 3 85. Carri Wood 72-75–147
    + 3 85. Jee Young Lee 74-73–147
    + 3 85. Brittany Lang 72-75–147
    + 3 85. Lindsey Wright 74-73–147
    + 3 85. Meaghan Francella 72-75–147
    + 3 85. Brandie Burton 77-70–147
    + 3 85. Sung Ah Yim 72-75–147
    + 3 85. Gloria Park 75-72–147
    + 3 85. Birdie Kim 74-73–147
    + 3 85. Kelli Kuehne 74-73–147
    + 3 85. Taylor Leon 73-74–147
    + 3 98. Sarah Kemp 75-73–148
    + 4 98. Vicky Hurst 77-71–148
    + 4 98. Kristy McPherson 73-75–148
    + 4 98. Dorothy Delasin 74-74–148
    + 4 98. Lorie Kane 74-74–148
    + 4 98. Angela Park 74-74–148
    + 4 98. Sophie Giquel 72-76–148
    + 4 105. Vicki Goetze-Ackerman 74-75–149
    + 5 105. Jill McGill 75-74–149
    + 5 105. Kim Hall 73-76–149
    + 5 105. Lisa Strom 72-77–149
    + 5 105. Eva Dahllof 73-76–149
    + 5 105. Brittany Lincicome 71-78–149
    + 5 105. Louise Friberg 76-73–149
    + 5 105. Rachel Hetherington 73-76–149
    + 5 105. Liselotte Neumann 75-74–149
    + 5 105. Miriam Nagl 74-75–149
    + 5 105. Cindy Rarick 77-72–149
    + 5 105. Na Ri Kim 77-72–149
    + 5 105. Anna Grzebien 77-72–149
    + 5 105. Sherri Turner 78-71–149
    + 5 105. Seol-An Jeon 79-70–149
    + 5 120. Michelle McGann 76-74–150
    + 6 120. Seo-Jae Lee 78-72–150
    + 6 122. Linda Wessberg 76-75–151
    + 7 122. Virada Nirapathpongporn 75-76–151
    + 7 122. Karen Stupples 77-74–151
    + 7 122. Juli Inkster 76-75–151
    + 7 122. Silvia Cavalleri 76-75–151
    + 7 122. Russy Gulyanamitta 79-72–151
    + 7 122. Grace Park 75-76–151
    + 7 129. Jackie Gallagher-Smith 73-79–152
    + 8 129. Mollie Fankhauser 77-75–152
    + 8 131. Candy Hannemann 79-74–153
    + 9 131. Lee Ann Walker-Cooper 80-73–153
    + 9 133. Carolina Llano 77-77–154
    + 10 133. Allison Fouch 78-76–154
    + 10 133. Becky Iverson 80-74–154
    + 10 136. Julieta Granada 82-73–155
    + 11 136. Siew-Ai Lim 77-78–155
    + 11 138. Nicole Perrot 81-75–156
    + 12 139. Kris Tamulis 76-82–158
    + 14 140. Nancy Lopez 78-84–162
    + 18 140. Christa Johnson 78-84–162
    + 18 142. Violeta Retamoza 80-86–166
    + 22 WD. Diana D'Alessio 73-WD

    WD. Beth Bader 76-WD

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