Angela Stanford followed her take-charge 64 with a 67 in Friday’s third round to maintain the lead at the LPGA Lotte Championship in Hawaii.
Stanford leads Michelle Wie and Hyo Joo Kim of South Korea by four, with Cristie Kerr another shot back after a clutch par-saving putt to end her round.
Chasing her sixth LPGA win, Stanford birdied three times in a four-hole stretch on the front, then three straight on the back against just a bogey at the 10th amid high winds.
“It’s hard for everybody, so you really have to be patient; it’s just a windy day in Texas, right?” Stanford, a TCU product, told Golf Channel of the windy conditions before discussing her steady putting this week. “I kind of found something and for some reason, I just have really good feel on these greens, and I’m seeing the break well.”
With winds picking up late as the lead groups ended the day, Kim and Wie bogeyed the par-4 18th at Ko Olina GC at Kapolei in Oahu, while Stanford and Kerr had to scramble for pars.
“It’s kind of like a head-scratcher kind of day,” Wie told Golf Channel. “A lot of putts just did not break the way I thought they were going to.”
Among the top four players on the leaderboard after 54 holes, only Kim had broken 70 in the first round. Yet Stanford is the only one to have broken 70 in both the second and third round.
Amy Anderson, Inbee Park and So Yeon Ryu are T-5 at 6 under, with Katie Burnett and Chella Choi T-8 another shot back.