Pettersen opens lead at Wegmans LPGA
ROCHESTER, N.Y. » After a breakout season on the LPGA Tour, Suzann Pettersen is tinkering with her swing again and keeping a tight lid on expectations.
"I'm a little bit surprised I'm playing this well, I must be honest," the Norwegian star said after shooting a 5-under 67 in the Wegmans LPGA yesterday to open a three-stroke lead over Morgan Pressel and South Koreans Eun-Hee Ji and Inbee Park.
Michelle Wie was 1 under after a 73 yesterday.
The 28-year-old Pettersen, a five-time tour winner in 2007, hasn't found her winning groove so far this year but has finishes of second, third and ninth in 10 events and is ninth on the money list. Her bogey-free round got her to 14-under 202.
"It's not like I'm surprised I'm playing solid, but I have less expectations, so maybe that's good," she said. "Of course you want to win tournaments, but a tournament is a four-day race and you've got to make sure you're there every day. There's no room for mistakes.."
Ji, who has ties for fourth and ninth in her second year on tour, holed out from 170 yards to open with an eagle and ran up six more birdies for a 64 and a second-place tie at 11 under.
"I had some lucky holes today," said the 22-year-old Seoul native, whose best finish was second to Pettersen at South Korea's Kolon Championship in October. "I wouldn't say it's my turn to beat her. ... It's more about winning my first LPGA tournament."
The 19-year-old Park (69), who tied for fourth at the U.S. Women's Open in her rookie year in 2007, shot her third sub-70 round. And Pressel (71), who held a one-stroke lead over Pettersen after the second round, got her only birdie on the last hole.
Joh wins Publinx again
ERIN, Wis. » UCLA star Tiffany Joh won the U.S. Women's Amateur Public Links for the second time in three years, rallying to win four of the last six holes for a 2-and-1 victory over Southern California recruit Jennifer Song.
Joh, from San Diego, the 2006 winner at Walking Stick in Pueblo, Colo., is the fifth two-time winner in the 32-year history of the USGA event. Song got to the final by beating Stephanie Kono of Hawaii in a semifinal Friday.
"I think I just kind of stumbled into it," Joh said of her 2006 victory. "I think winning it this time around, when I really wanted it, is just that much more meaningful. ... I had to work harder for it."
Kelly Fuiks (1977-78), Lori Castillo (1979-80) of Hawaii, Pearl Sinn (1988-89) and Jo Jo Robertson (1995, '97) also won the tournament twice.