Stage II of LPGA Qualifying Tournament
Plantation Golf and Country Club – Panther and Bobcat Courses
October 24, 2015
Third Round News and Notes
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VENICE, Fla., October 24, 2015 – Megan Khang (Rockland, Mass.) and Grace Na (Alameda, Calif.) will share the lead heading into the final round at Stage II of the LPGA Qualifying Tournament. Players are trying to finish in the top-80 and advance to final stage of qualifying where LPGA Tour dreams are realized.
Khang tied the low round of the tournament with a stellar 4-under 68 on the Panther Course.
“Today’s round felt a lot more smooth than the past few rounds,” Khang said. “I calmed myself down because I knew that I was in a good position. I wasn’t pressing for good scores and birdies but a lot of putts came for me. I left a few out there but that’s golf.”
The amateur tallied an impressive seven birdies against three bogeys on the day to move from 14th into a share of the lead.
“It’s definitely a great experience,” Khang said of her time at Q-School. “It really does teach you that one stroke could mean the world to you because you’re playing for your potential career. It’s a pressure moment each time you hit the ball but it’s a good kind of pressure that you thrive for and it’s what I thrive for.”
Khang is now 18 holes away from moving on to the Final Stage of Q-School in Daytona Beach.
“If I do happen to make it to Third Stage it’s going to be a whirlwind of emotions,” Khang said. “I’m going to have to tell myself to calm down because you still have to play golf. There only the top-20 get their cards so it’s just head forward, thinking positive and play how I know how to play.”
Na has been as consistent as they come this week with rounds of 71, 71 and 72.
“I think I left some out there,” Na admitted. “My ball striking wasn’t as good as yesterday but my chipping and putting worked really well so I was happy about what I did out there today. I feel really good about my game. It’s been a while since I’ve been shooting consistently well. I’ll take it with that and have fun tomorrow.”
Stage II is a 72-hole tournament held at Plantation Golf and Country Club on both the Panther & Bobcat Courses. A total of 195 players, 60 of which advanced out of LPGA Qualifying Tournament Stage I in late August at Mission Hills Country Club, will be competing to advance to final stage. The white line yardage for the Bobcat Course is 6,536 while the total yardage for the Panther Course is 6,363.
The top-80 players plus ties at the end of Sunday’s final round will advance to final stage of LPGA Q-School, which will be held at LPGA International Golf Course – Jones & Hill Courses from Wednesday, December 2 through Sunday, December 6. There is no cut at Stage II and players that complete 72 holes will automatically receive Symetra Tour status for 2016.
Players that finish in the top-20 at final stage will receive category 12 status on the priority list for the LPGA Tour while players that finish 21 through 45 will receive category 17 status (conditional).
EMMA TALLEY MOVES INTO TOP-15: Emma Talley (Princeton, Ky.) will enter the final round of Stage II of Q-School in a tie for 15th after a 1-over round of 73 on the Panther Course.
“The wind has been really hard to play in so I’m happy with my round today,” Talley said. “I felt like I played much better than my score was but I’m not going to complain. It’s a beautiful day and I’m playing well this week so that’s what I was here to do.”
Talley now sits at 5-over for her week in Venice with one round remaining.
“It’s definitely been a different kind of pressure for sure,” Talley said of Q-School. “I wanted to get through Stage II so I have one more day and hopefully I can do that and then I’ll go back to school and finish up my degree.”
The Alabama senior doesn’t plan to compete in Stage III even if she advances but if she finishes in the top-80 this week she will be eligible to compete on the Symetra Tour following her graduation.
“I just didn’t want to have to wait from May until First Stage of Q-School in September,” Talley explained. “I’m going to finish my school and be a kid for six more months and then try to make it out here. For me, it’s always been a goal of mine to get my college degree and, on a different side note of that, my dad always said ‘you’re only going to be 21 in college one time so you might as well have fun and be a kid’ so why rush it’?”
BACK TO BACK 71S HAVE JOANNA COE IN THE HUNT: Joanna Coe (Mays Landing, N.J.) has posted back-to-back rounds of 71 to climb up to 29th place at Stage II of LPGA Qualifying School.
“Today was probably the best I’ve played for the three days,” Coe admitted. “I hit more fairways. I hit the shots I liked and my putter was really working for me. I’m very happy. I got some revenge on the Panther.”
Coe certainly got her revenge on The Panther Course as she shot 10 shots better than her opening round 81.
“I know I’ve been playing well for a while,” Coe admitted. “The first round was honestly a couple of balls in the water and didn’t make putts but that’s golf. It got a little bit out of control but I didn’t let it bother me.”
The Jersey native will now return to a course that she loves with a chance at making the Final Stage of Q-School.
“I’m happy to go back to Bobcat in a good position,” Coe said. “I’m going to try and just play smart like I did today and yesterday and try to avoid mistakes.”
Coe and fellow Tour Pro Molly Aronsson (Shelburne, Vt.) spent the month of August working with Recharge for Resiliency Program through the United States Air Force.
“It was incredible,” Coe said. “I was away for a little over three weeks and missed three tournaments and it was just incredible to give back to these troops, teach them some golf lessons, put smiles on their faces and really interact with them.”
The duo traveled to North Dakota, London, Venice and Frankfort giving clinics, participating in lunch and dinner meet and greets and hosting player development sessions.
“My back-up plan is to teach so this fits along with my future career perfectly,” Coe explained. “When I got back to the Tour I started playing well again. When you step away and talk about and teach the basics it tends to help and it did.”