As the LSU Tigers football team defeated the Arkansas Razorbacks at Donald W. Reynolds Razorback Stadium, an LSU women’s golf graduate was tearing up the Pelican Golf Club on moving day at the Pelican LPGA Championship presented by DEX Imagining and Konica Minolta. Austin Ernst jumped from a tie for 14th into the top five with a third-round 65 to finish -6 heading into the final day.
It was the lowest 18-hole score she’s recorded since the second and third rounds of the Walmart NW Arkansas Championship presented by P&G, where she won her second-career LPGA Tour title.
“My ball striking has been really good all week, [almost] hit every fairway today. I have just been really aggressive with my iron shots, and today I got a few putts to fall. That's the only difference between today and the first couple days,” said Ernst, who has hit 39 of 42 fairways so far this week. “Yeah, it was just really solid overall.”
Ernst started birdie-bogey on Nos. 1 and 2, but after six straight pars, she carded six birdies the rest of the way including three straight between Nos. 9-11. She said she took advantage of the opportunity in front of her whenever she could. “When I had a scoring club in my hand, I was really aggressive and kind of got a putt inside 10, 15 feet, then I made them,” said Ernst.
Since the restart, Ernst has been consistent on Tour making every cut through 10 events since the LPGA Drive On Championship—Inverness Club. She has two top five finishes, including her first win in 2020, and knows how important it is to stay consistent to record another top result in Belleair, Fla.
“I have been working on the same thing with my swing, and it is good. It's literally just kind of trying to get it a little bit better. I'm just trying to get through the ball well. It's a simple key. I don't have to think about it when I play, which is nice,” Ernst said. “And then my putting. I've really tried to work on my 6-15 footers. I feel like I get a lot of those because of how aggressive I am with my irons. I got a lot of putts in that range, and when I don't play as well, I'm not making as many from 10 to 15 feet, especially. Really when I putt, I've really tried to work on that range and today I made a lot from that range which is nice.”