Patience was key for Gerina Piller, who backed up her opening round 63 with a three-under par, 68 on Friday morning to maintain her lead at the Marathon Classic presented by Owens Corning and O-I. Piller sits at 11-under par, one stroke ahead of Lexi Thompson, In-Kyung Kim and Peiyun Chen.
“I felt like I played great. I missed some birdie opportunities, but I made some longer putts today. Ball striking feels great. Putting feels great. It was just a matter of staying patient and just letting the results come,” Piller said after her round.
Piller started her day on the second nine and reeled off six pars before making her first birdie of the day and only birdie on the back to make the turn in 36.
“I kind of had a par streak going there. But I gave myself chances for birdie, and at that point, you've just got to be patient, and there's some birdie holes out there. I stayed patient, not one on my front nine and then reeled off three in a row on the back. It is difficult, but if you can just kind of plug along and hit fairways and greens and keep it simple.”
The 2010 rookie has demonstrated tremendous patience throughout her career, with 34 top 10s including four runner-ups, as she continues to work towards her first victory on the LPGA Tour.
“It's only Friday, so I wouldn't put the cart before the horse, but to get that first win I think would be really special, no matter where it is,” Piller said when asked about the possibility of winning. “I'm just going to try to focus on the process, and the result will take care of itself.”
Piller is making her fifth start in Toledo, where on Thursday, she slept on the first round lead for the first time in her career. It could be a week of more first for Piller if she can hang on this weekend.