LEE6 LOOKING FOR LPGA ROOKIE WIN 2.0
In 1950, Beverly Hanson won the Eastern Open in her LPGA Tour debut. It took 68 years for any player to match that feat, with Jin Young Ko matching Hanson when she won the 2018 ISPS Handa Women’s Australian Open.
Just one year later, Jeongeun Lee6 has the chance to join that elite group. The 22-year-old from the Republic of Korea, who took medalist honors at the 2018 LPGA Q Series to earn Tour Membership, trails leader Nelly Korda by just four strokes heading into Sunday’s final round.
“My goal for today is like top five,” said Lee6. “I want to go step by step. It's better to win maybe, but it's going to go step by step, will be fine for now.”
The 6 at the end of Lee6’s name is not a typo. She is the sixth player with that name in the history of the Korean LPGA Tour, and all six players were assigned their appropriate numeral to differentiate them. Lee6 is joined on the LPGA Tour by Lee5, Jeong Eun Lee, who is not in this week’s field.
PLAYING EARLY SUITS OLSON
Playing in the first group off at 7:40 a.m., Amy Olson had the round of the day at 6-under 66. The North Dakota native carded an eagle-3 at No. 5 and added four more birdies to her bogey-free round, skyrocketing up the leaderboard from a tie for 60th into a tie for 18th.
“Some days it's your day and some days it isn't,” said Olson, who will tee off at Noon on Sunday, nearly four-and-a-half hours later than she did on Saturday. “You just kind of stay patient. It was really fun making a couple long putts early, and I made some good par saves, like on the 18th, and just keeps the momentum going.”
Rolex Rankings No. 16 Nelly Korda (71-66-67, -12)
- This is the fourth time that Korda holds the lead heading into the final round, including during her victory at the 2018 Swinging Skirts LPGA Taiwan Championship
- She hit 1114 of 14 fairways and 15 of 18 greens, with 28 putts
- Korda is in her third LPGA Tour season; she won the 2018 Swinging Skirts Taiwan LPGA Championship and has 13 top-10 finishes
- Korda is playing in her third ISPS Handa Women’s Australian Open; she finished T40 in both 2017 and 2018
Rolex Rankings No. 164 Haru Nomura (70-67-70, -9)
- This is the second consecutive week that Nomura enters the final round trailing by three strokes, following last week’s ISPS Handa Vic Open, where she ultimately finished tied for fifth
- She hit 10 of 14 fairways and 14 of 18 greens, with 29 putts
- Nomura is in her ninth season on the LPGA Tour; she has wins at the 2016 ISPS Handa Women’s Australian Open, 2016 Swinging Skirts LPGA Classic presented by CTBC and 2017 Volunteers of America Texas Shootout presented by JTBC
- Nomura is playing in her seventh ISPS Handa Women’s Australian Open; she won the 2016 tournament at The Grange Golf Club and finished T3 in 2017
- This is Nomura’s second LPGA Tour event since the 2018 CP Women’s Open; she dealt with a back injury for much of the 2018 season
Defending champion Jin Young Ko is tied for sixth at -7, five strokes behind leader Nelly Korda
Hannah Green is the leading Australian at -6, followed by Sarah Kemp at -5
Jane Park was disqualified following her round for signing an incorrect scorecard