Stephanie Meadow will head into the final two rounds of the LOTTE Championship just outside the top-10 after continuing her fine recent form at Ko Olina.
The Jordanstown woman backed up a 71 in her first round with a two-under 70 on day two to sit three-under-par for the week and in a share of 11th, seven shots behind leader Hyo Joo Kim.
Cavan’s Leona Maguire, meanwhile, had a tougher second round as she signed for a three-over 75, but she is also safely in for the final two rounds as she sits tied-48th at two-over-par.
Meadow has found something new in her game having impressed both at the JTBC Classic, where she finished 10th, and then for three rounds at the Chevron Championship a week later, and she looks to have taken that into Hawaii, too.
The 30-year-old did all her scoring on the back nine, a solitary bogey at the par-four second seeing her play her front nine in 37, as birdies at the 10th, 16th and 18th took her back up the leaderboard and into a position to strike.
Maguire, however, ran into bogey trouble as five of them – along with two birdies – contributed to her 75 that has her playing catch-up at the halfway stage.
Starting at the 10th, the Solheim Cup star bogeyed her opening hole and then the 12th either side of a birdie on 11, with a bogey at the 16th cancelled out by a birdie on the par-five 18th.
But that would be her last birdie of the day and instead dropped shots at the second and sixth, both par-fours, has her with work to do.
Leader Kim has a three-shot lead at the midway point after she signed for a second consecutive round of 67 to reach 10-under-par, the Korean noting down five birdies in a bogey-free effort in her second round.
“I’m satisfied I played (with) the same score and bogey-free round as yesterday, but I’m (more) satisfied with today’s play than yesterday,” said Kim. “Of course, there was a mistake. But the reason why that I’m very satisfied is that it’s a smaller mistake than yesterday.”
Sarah Kemp is Kim’s closest challenger, the Australian carding a three-under 69 on day two to reach seven-under-par, with Ariya Jutanugarn and Haeji Kang a shot further back at six-under.
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