Leona Maguire and Stephanie Meadow both progressed to the weekend as Old American Golf Club continued to show its teeth on day two of the Volunteers of America Classic.
The tournament’s unique December slot has meant scoring has been hard to come by with icy winds ensuring the course plays particularly long this week in Texas. In many ways it’s been a home away from home for Ireland’s competing duo but that hasn’t made things any easier and even with warmer conditions on Friday, the pair still struggled. Maguire’s leading the pair after carding a three-over par round of 74 on Friday. The Cavan professional carded two birdies but also three bogeys and a double and at four-over par for the tournament, she’s just inside the top-40 with 36-holes to play.
Maguire is two strokes better off than her Olympic teammate Meadow who arrived this week looking to back-up a podium finish last time out at the Pelican Women’s Championship. In the form of her LPGA Tour career of late, Meadow has fond memories of the VOA having retained her card with a birdie-birdie finish at last season’s renewal but this assignment is proving to be a much more difficult prospect with Meadow’s second round 73, a mix of four bogeys and two birdies, leaving her at six-over par, two shots under the cut line.
27-year-old Floridian Jessica Korda shares the lead at the halfway mark with Anna Nordqvist and 19-year-old Yealimi Noh at four-under par. After the temperature never made it out of the 40s on Thursday, it was in the high 50s on Friday in the final tuneup before the U.S. Women’s Open next week at Champions Golf Club in Houston.
“I kept telling my caddie,`Today would have been so nice to go on a hike with your dog, a cup of coffee, say how grateful you are for everything in your life,'” Korda said. Korda shot her second straight 2-under 69. The five-time LPGA Tour winner played the first 12 holes in 4 under, then dropped a stroke on the par-5 13th and parred the final five.
“It was tough,” Korda said. “Front-nine pins, they were pretty gettable. Back-nine pins, it was just defense all day. It didn’t matter where I put myself. Honestly, I was trying to attack it at different angles. I’m happy with my ball-striking. Honestly, I don’t know what else I could have done.”
Nordqvist closed with a bogey on the par-4 18th for a 68. The 33-year-old Swede made all of her birdies on par-4 holes. She parred the four par-5 holes: “I’m excited that I played really solid today and that it was a little bit warmer today than yesterday,” Nordqvist said. “But overall I felt like I played really solid. There were a lot of tough pin placements out there.”
- Full scoring HERE
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