Jessica Korda is trying to leave everyone else behind — and not get too far ahead of herself in the LPGA MEDIHEAL Championship.
Korda shot a five-under-par 67 on Friday afternoon in warmer-but-still-chilly conditions at Lake Merced to take a one-stroke lead into the weekend.
“It’s only Friday, still two more days to go,” Korda said. “Play the same way I have been the last two days. Hopefully, some putts drop. Stay patient and stick with my process.”
The winner in Thailand in February in her return from reconstructive jaw surgery, the long-hitting Korda had six birdies — three on the first four holes — and a bogey to reach nine under.
“Just staying calm,” the five-time LPGA Tour winner said. “I knew I was going to get certain bounces that weren’t going to be super favorable as the greens got firmer during the afternoon. Just stayed patient and stayed with my process and here we are.”
Monday qualifier Annie Park was second after a 66 in the morning. The 2013 NCAA champion at Southern California has fought back problems.
“I battled some injuries last year and coming back was tough,” Park said. “I like I am where I am right now, so it feels good. I learned a lot from it. I didn’t know how much I missed the sport. I love the sport. I was very excited to come back, and so it was actually a huge turning point for me, a different perspective toward life and golf.”
England’s Charley Hull is at seven under after a 68. Lydia Ko had a 70 to get to six under. She won the Swinging Skirts LPGA at Lake Merced in 2014 and 2015.
“I think just put myself in good positions,” Ko said. “This is a course where you need to drive it well and putt well. Hopefully, I’ll continue doing that and just stay patient and stay confident.”
Moriya Jutanugarn, the winner Sunday in Los Angeles for her first LPGA Tour title, shot 68 to join Sei Young Kim (70) at five under.
Minjee Lee, the 2012 U.S. Girls’ Junior champion at Lake Merced, shot a 70 to match So Yeon Ryu (70), Nasa Hataoka (69) and Su Oh (72) at four under.
Nelly Korda, Jessica’s sister, is at two under after a 70. Top-ranked Inbee Park had a 71 to get to one under.
Kim-Putnam on top at Zurich Classic
Michael Kim and Andrew Putnam teamed to shoot a three-under 69 to take the Zurich Classic lead into the weekend.
The format switched to alternate shot for the second round, with one player hitting the tee shots on even-numbered holes and the other on odd numbers. Kim and Putnam made five birdies and were able to recover from a double bogey on No. 5 to reach 13-under 131.
Kevin Kisner and Scott Brown, who lost in a playoff last year, were a stroke back after a 70. Bubba Watson and Matt Kuchar shot a 67 at TPC Louisiana to pull within four shots of the lead. Jordan Spieth and Ryan Palmer missed the cut after making double bogey on the final two holes.
After best-play play Saturday, the final round will be played in alternate shot.
Wallace ahead in China
Matt Wallace shot a two-under 70 to take a one-stroke lead into the third round of the China Open in Beijing. The Englishman had a two-round total of nine-under 135 on the Topwin Golf and Country Club course.
Tied for second in the European PGA Tour event were American Kim Sihwan (66), Nacho Elvira of Spain (67) and Australian Jason Scrivener (69).