OLYMPIA FIELDS, Ill. – There are turnarounds, and then there are complete 180s. Kelly Shon vaulted more than 100 spots on the leaderboard at the KPMG Women’s PGA Championship when she followed an opening 77 at Olympia Fields’ North Course with a record-tying 8-under 63.
The 63 ties Patty Sheehan and Meg Mallon as the lowest second-round score in championship history. Rickie Fowler (second round, 2007 Fighting Illini Invitational) and Vijay Singh (second round, 2003 U.S. Open) both shot 63 on the North Course.
“I wish I had known that I could have beaten all of them by one shot,” said Shon. “Just kidding.”
Shon was 8 over in her first 14 holes and had to return on Friday to complete the round after thunderstorms suspended play. She drained a 90-foot eagle putt on the 18th to shoot 77 and told herself to quit playing it safe. Calmer conditions and overnight rain allowed the Princeton grad to attack more pins.
On the second 18, Shon poured in six birdies and another eagle on closing par 5. She credited a pep talk from her best friend for the attitude change. Shon said she was embarrassed by the way she handled herself on Thursday evening during all those bogeys. Particularly the way she treated her caddie.
“I got mad at all sorts of stuff, and the fault was all mine,” she said.
Last night Shon’s best friend, who is not a golfer, made her promise that if she got frustrated on Friday, she wouldn’t show it.
Shon can thank that friend for not only making the cut, but putting her name in the record books.