Saturday, May 3, 2014

North Texas LPGA Shootout Friday: Meena Lee and Stacy Lewis Set Pace with 64s

Meena Lee started her 2nd round with an eagle on the par-5 10th and never looked back as she posted a 64 to catch Caroline Masson at -8 atop the leaderboard of the North Texas LPGA Shootout.  Masson, who just missed being LPGA Rookie of the Year in 2013, fired her 2nd-straight 5-birdie 67 on the par-71 Las Colinas course, but her consistent excellence was overshadowed by the pyrotechnics of a host of her competitors.

Lee never made a par on the back (her front), following up her opening eagle with a bogey, 2 birdies, another bogey, 3 birdies, and a bogey--and then capping it off with a 3-hole birdie train on a bogey-free front (her back).  Stacy Lewis, meanwhile, drove for show (over 317 yards off the tee!) and putted for dough (only 26 putts on a day she missed only 3 greens) as she put together a bogey-free 64 less than 24 hours after one of her worst putting rounds in the last several years.  And guess who's right with her there at -7?  None other than Natalie Gulbis, who fired an 8-birdie 65 yesterday (also with 15 greens and only 26 putts).  And matching Suzann Pettersen's low round from Thursday were Julieta Granada, Dewi Claire Schreefel, Kim Kaufman, and Tiffany Joh.

So who cares if Pettersen and Cristie Kerr stalled a little bit today, Michelle Wie fell back a little, Lexi Thompson and Angela Stanford continued to be stuck in neutral, and In-Kyung Kim withdrew?  I'm on cloud 9 because New Yorkers Laura Diaz (67) and Moira Dunn (68), youngsters Mina Harigae (68) and Jennifer Song (69), and superstars Inbee Park (68) and Na Yeon Choi (69) all made major moves up the leaderboard.  Yes, I'm down that Morgan Pressel, Hee Young Park, Jeong Jang, Lizette Salas, and Chie Arimura all missed the cut by a shot, and sad for Catriona Matthew, Seon Hwa Lee, Karin Sjodin, Louise Friberg, Laura Davies, and Se Ri Pak, who missed it by more.  But when surprises like Masson, Gulbis, Christina Kim, Granada, Schreefel, Dori Carter, Dunn, Megan McChrystal, Thidapa Suwannapura, Katherine Kirk, and Felicity Johnson are hanging with the big girls--including Azahara Munoz, Pornanong Phatlum, and Jenny Shin--it just goes to show how deep the LPGA is.

So basically anything can happen this weekend.  Too bad I'm too busy to stay over with my folks on the way back from Albany and watch a little bit of the action tomorrow before I get back to Hamburg!