Stephanie Meadow and Leona Maguire will head into Sunday’s final round of the LPGA Tour’s Walmart NW Arkansas Championship hoping to go low and force their way up the leaderboard.
Jordanstown professional Meadow was unable to replicate her superb play of day one that saw her return a six-under par 65 to open her account on Friday.
On Saturday, Meadow found herself at three over par through 15 holes without a birdie in sight before picking up two shots on the way in and signing for a one-over par 72.
That leaves her at minus-five for the tournament, just inside the top-30 but now trailing the leaders by 11, while Cavan’s Leona Maguire is three shots further adrift after making the cut on the number at two-under par.
The former world amateur number one had four twos on her card and recovered from a double-bogey six at the unlucky 13th with two birdies in a race to the clubhouse that she won, ensuring a Sunday pay cheque at Pinnacle Country Club.
Anna Nordqvist shot a nine-under par 62 on moving day to bolt into a three-stroke lead over Sei Young Kim ahead of the final round.
Nordqvist hit all 18 greens in regulation in her second straight bogey-free round to take control of the tournament.
“I played really solid both today and yesterday,” Nordqvist said. “Got off to a great start. Had a lot of good opportunities. Made a few putts early and just kept going. Felt like I hit my irons really well.”
“There is something about Arkansas. Always liked this place. Probably one of the few places in the U.S. I could really see myself being because I like the atmosphere here.”
Nordqvist has two major titles and six other LPGA Tour victories. She last won in 2017 at the Founders Cup in Phoenix and the major Evian Championship in France.
“There is obviously low scores out here, so you got to keep going,” Nordqvist said. “It’s just so competitive out here. In order to win out here you really have to be on top of your game. So feel good so far, but I’m going to have to post a low one tomorrow, too.”
Full scoring HERE