Saturday, September 13, 2014

Evian Championship Saturday: A Tale of 2 Moving Days

It's hard to get a feel for what's happening at the Evian Championship just from following the live leaderboard, and I won't be able to catch up with the tv coverage until this evening, but it's pretty fair to say that moving day has been a mix of the best of times and worst of times for the golfers who made the cut at the LPGA's final major of 2014.

The Best of Times

  • Mi Jung Hur is -2 today and bogey-free over her last 13 holes and counting, which puts her in the lead at -9 with 6 holes to play today.
  • Anna Nordqvist has made 9 birdies in her last 28 holes of bogey-free golf to pull within 2 shots of Hur's lead. 
  • Na Yeon Choi and Jane Park both fired 6-birdie 67s to move to -4 and E for the week, respectively.
  • Ha Na Jang shrugged off a double in the middle of her round to post a 6-birdie 68 and move to -4 for the week, while Amelia Lewis birdied 6 of her last 10 holes to fight back to +1 on the strength of a 68 of her own.
The Worst of Times
  • Brittany Lincicome opened with back-to-back doubles after playing her previous 31 holes without even a bogey and followed them up with a triple on the par-5 7th.  Now at -3 for the week, she needs to regroup over her final 6 holes to have a chance to fight back into contention.  Ah, she just birdied 13 to fight back to -4!
  • Also tumbling down the leaderboard are Moriya Jutanugarn (who's made 5 bogeys in her last 12 holes to fall to -1), Minjee Lee (who's already made 5 bogeys today, as well, and is currently at E), Julieta Granada (who salvaged a 73 despite making 6 bogeys today and finished her day at E for the week), Mina Harigae (who bogeyed 5 of her 1st 6 holes and recently doubled the par-3 16th), and Amy Yang (who bogeyed 4 of her 1st 7 holes and just took a quad on the 16th!).
  • I didn't expect the likes of Lydia Ko, Paula Creamer, Azahara Munoz, Shanshan Feng, and In-Kyung Kim to be over par today, but that's either where they finished or look likely to finish.
That leaves players like Hyo Joo Kim, Stacy LewisSuzann Pettersen, and Karrie Webb to muddle through today.  Kim just birdied 2 holes in a row to get back to E on her day and -9 for the week; Lewis also has 4 birdies and 4 bogeys today and is still at -5; Pettersen had bogeyed 2 of her last 4 holes to drop to +1 on her day and -5 for the week; Webb is in a similar boat as Pettersen.  Let's see what they can do down the home stretch!

[Update 1 (10:58 am):  I was considering not writing about her until she was done with her round, so as to avoid calling down the Mostly Harmless jinx on her accidentally, but I decided to take the risk and note that Mariajo Uribe is -2 with 4 birdies today and at -6 with only 2 holes to play.  Only Kim and Hur at -9 and Nordqvist at -7 are ahead of her!]

[Update 2 (10:59 am):  That's 2 bounceback birdies in a row from Lincicome.  She's now fought back to -5!!]

[Update 3 (11:03 am):  The par-5 15th looks like it's going to be a key hole today.  Lincicome can make it 3 birdies in a row if she plays it well.  Webb just birdied it to return to -6.  Lewis couldn't birdie it so she stays at -5.  Jutanugarn birdied it to fight back to -2.  Now just waiting to see what Pettersen, Hur, Kim, and Lincicome can do with it!]

[Update 4 (11:06 am):  How about Inky and Ko both birdieing the 16th?!]

[Update 5 (11:08 am):  Lexi Thompson had a 4-birdie, 4-bogey 71 to remain at -2 for the week, while Minjee Lee fought back with 2 birdies in her last 5 holes of bogey-free golf to join Creamer and Ayako Uehara at -1.]

[Update 6 (11:11 am):  Too bad Ayako was the only Japanese golfer to play well today.  Mika Miyazato (76) and Sakura Yokomine (75) fell back to +4 for the week.  Se Ri Pak (75, +6), Beatriz Recari (76, +6), Cristie Kerr (75, +7), and Eun-Hee Ji (75, +8) were also in the moving backward club today, among many others!]

[Update 7 (11:14 am):  Neither Pettersen nor Hur could birdie the par-5 15th.  Opportunity for Lincicome and Kim to make something happen there!]

[Update 8 (11:15 am):  Nordqvist just doubled the par-4 17th to fall back to -5.]

[Update 9 (11:16 am):  Uribe bogeyed 18 to fall back to -1 on her day and -5 for the week.]

[Update 10 (11:18 am):  Man, what a way for Nordqvist to end a 30-hole bogey-free run.  If this keeps up, Kim and Hur could really separate themselves from the field today!]

[Update 11 (11:20 am):  Just realized I never mentioned Inbee Park's 7-birdie 69 today, which also included 2 early bogeys, another bogey in the middle of her round, and a late double!  At -3, she's not quite out of this thing just yet, either!]

[Update 12 (11:23 am):  Kim could not birdie 15, so she still hasn't been able to return to where she was after 18 holes (double digits under par), while Lincicome killed her mo' with a bogey on 15!]

[Update 13 (11:23 am):  This number update is as good as any to report that Yang's walkoff bogey left her with a 78 and left her at +3 for the week.]

[Update 14 (11:25 am):  Walkoff bogey for Inky leaves her at -2.  She'll need some help from Kim and Hur today and tomorrow to have a chance to win.]

[Update 15 (11:26 am):  Inbee has not broken 30 putts all week, which is really rare for her.  Here's hoping she's saved up a lot of 1-putts for tomorrow!]

[Update 16 (11:27 am):  Whoa!  Hur tripled 16!!!  She's now -6!!!]

[Update 17 (11:34 am):  And now Kim goes ahead and bogeys 16 to fall back to -8.  With Lewis's bogey on 17, this race is tightening up!!]

[Update 18 (11:35 am):  Meanwhile, Lincicome birdies 16 to fight back to -5!!]

[Update 19 (11:35 am):  That's 3 birdies and 2 bogeys in her last 5 holes!]

[Update 20 (11:37 am):  OK, Jutanugarn parred 18, so even though she made 3 bogeys on each side, she only had a 75 and is still -1 for the week.]

[Update 21 (11:38 am):  Ko also parred 18, so is safely in at -4.  Who knows how close or far from the lead that will be when all is said and done today?!]

[Update 22 (11:39 am):  Ditto for Nordqvist, so she ends the day at -5.]

[Update 23 (11:40 am):  Lewis finishes bogey-bogey to drop to -3 for the week.]

[Update 24 (11:41 am):  Pettersen now doubled 17!!  She's only -3 now.  What a contrast to her strong finishes the 1st 2 days!]

[Update 25 (11:44 am):  Webb's walkoff birdie gets her to -3 over her last 10 holes, -1 on her day, and -7 for the week!!!]

[Update 26 (11:49 am):  Kim pars 17 to hang onto a 1-shot lead on Webb.  Even pars are dramatic now!]

[Update 27 (11:50 am):  Lincicome's bogey now makes it 6 holes without a par.  And even at -4, she's by no means out of this thing!]

[Update 28 (11:55 am):  Hur pars 18 to stay at -6 and Pettersen pars to stay at -3.  Can't believe how few puts Hur has taken this week!  Also can't believe I have to pull the plug on this.  Girls' Japanese school is almost over!]

1 comment:

Colin N.Z said...

This tournament goes right through our night here so while a lot of it has been live here I certainly have not been. I still can't imagine seeing SYR damaging her putter maybe Suzann or Stacy but SYR Wow... Lyds is hanging in there for us and Bam Bam unfortunately had a day to forget. The pin positions have certainly proved to make this a challenging course that and avoiding all those white marked areas.