Looking to defend her title, the Norwegian carded one eagle, two birdies and one bogey to take a commanding five-stroke lead over South Korean Sun Young Yoo and Spaniard Carlota Ciganda into tomorrow’s third round.
Pettersen’s round was jumpstarted by a hole-in-one at the par-3 second where she used a pitching wedge from 133 yards to record her third ace on the LPGA Tour.
“I called the shot, I hit it exactly how I wanted and was fortunate enough that I had a good break,” said Pettersen. “It was a very good shot. It's nice to get a hole-in-one when you actually call the shot in advance and then pull the trigger.”
Following the eagle, Pettersen cruised along the front-nine of Sunrise Golf & Country Club as she recorded six consecutive pars before carding her first birdie of the day at the par-5 ninth. After making the turn at 3-under for the day, Pettersen picked-up her first bogey of the day at No. 14 but was able to claw her way back to 7-under for the tournament with a birdie at the par-5 18th.
With swirling winds making scoring conditions difficult on Thursday and Friday, Pettersen was the only player in this week’s 78-player field to record two subpar rounds.
“So today was a really tough day,” said Pettersen. “The wind got stronger and stronger and it's definitely not easy out there. The wind and the conditions tests every aspect of the game. I mean, even a 80-yard shot it's challenging enough to control the spin and know what the ball is going to do. Standing over putts, you feel the wind on the body. It's a mental test out there but it's a fun challenge. I've been playing really solid golf, and I'm excited to be where I'm at after two days.”
As the 13-time LPGA Tour winner is inching her way one-step closer to clinching her fourth victory this season, she is also making a significant dent into Inbee Park’s lead in the Rolex Player of the Year race, LPGA Official Money List, and Rolex Rankings. With a limited number of events remaining on this year’s LPGA Tour schedule, Pettersen knows she will have to continue an impressive stretch of tournament that has included two wins and two top-3 finishes if she wants to finish the year on top.
“I'm playing pretty good,” said Pettersen. “I'm trying to shoot the best I can shoot, and if I want to finish where I want to finish at the end of the year, I've got to start this week and try to make the most out of this tournament. That's kind of where my focus is.”
Topics: Sunrise LPGA Taiwan Championship