Gillman, Carlson tied after 54 holes at Junior PGA
POTOMAC FALLS, Va. – Kristen Gillman and Abbey Carlson are tied for the lead in the girls division after 54 holes of the Junior PGA Championship at Trump National Golf Club. Both players are at 4-under 209 for the tournament.
Amy Lee, who tied the Tournament Championship course record with a 4-under 67 on Thursday, sits in solo third at 3 under.
Carlson, who posted her second consecutive 2-under 69, was bogey-free in her third round. She had three good par saves on Nos. 4, 5 and 6 to get her momentum going before making a 25-foot birdie putt on the par-3 ninth.
Carlson, a native of Lake Mary, Fla., has stuck to her game plan of hitting fairways and greens at Trump National. She feels that if she has a birdie opportunity, she’ll try to make it, but par is always a good score out here.
She made one last birdie at the par-4 16th from 35 feet.
“It was solid golf all the way around,” Carlson added.
Early in the round, it was Lee who caught fire and rose to the top of the leaderboard.
She was 5 under through seven holes after she drove the green on the par-4 seventh. It was playing at 255 yards in the third round and she made a 40-foot putt for eagle.
“My putting really helped me on the front nine,” Lee said.
She struggled on the back nine after failing to get up and down for par from the greenside bunker on the par-3 12th. She lipped out for birdie on No. 13 and then three-putted from 20 feet on 14.
Lee, a USC commit, finished strong with a birdie on the 18th to pull within one shot of the leaders.
“The leaderboard is very packed so you can’t really take anything for granted,” Lee said about heading into the final round. “I just have to play my game.”
Gillman started off strong, faded in the middle of the round and came on strong again at the end. She made four birdies then three consecutive bogeys in the middle of her round at Nos. 7-9 for a 1-under 70.
Gillman, of Austin, Texas, said her ball-striking was responsible for the good round.
She also said, “ I made a few good putts when I needed to.”
Samantha Wagner, the 36-hole leader, shot a 2-over 73. She is in fourth place, two shots behind Gillman and Carlson.
Wagner birdied her first hole of the day, then proceeded to three-putt No. 2. Then on 10, her length got her in trouble as she went for the green in two on the par 5. She found the water and made a double-bogey.
Wagner wasn’t pleased with her third-round score, but she likes where she’s at on the leaderboard.
“I’m comfortable with the position I’m in,” Wagner said.
With a packed leaderboard, any of these girls has a chance to win.