Leona Maguire’s second round of 69 was enough to make the cut for the final day of play at the LPGA’s Walmart NW Arkansas Championship on three-under-par, while South Korea’s Rye Hae-Ran leads the competition on -14.
Maguire is the only representative from the island still in action in America due to Stephanie Meadow withdrawing from the competition in Rogers, Arkansas.
Ryu recorded back-to-back blemish-free rounds of 64 giving her a two-shot lead on Japan’s Yuna Nishimura and Australia’s Hannah Green who share second.
Maguire knew she needed to get off to a fast start on the second day of play in the Natural State, and although she birdied her opening hole, she followed it up with two bogeys leaving her one-over-par through three holes.
The Cavan native rectified this on the fifth with her second birdie of the day to return to level par and would remain there for the remainder of her front nine.
A par on the 10th for Maguire would be her fifth in a row, before hitting consecutive birdies on the 11th and 12th to move to -3 for the tournament.
The 14th held more joy for the Solheim Cup hero as she birdied her fifth hole of the day and looked more likely to make the cut for Sunday.
A bogey on the 17th made for an uncomfortable final hole for Maguire, however, with the cut being set at -2, the two-time winner on the LPGA tour qualified for Sunday’s play by the slimmest of margins.
Making things look easy at the top of the leaderboard for the second straight day was Ryu Hae-Ran, who recorded another spotless round of 64 to take control of the tournament.
Looking at Ryu’s scorecards for the opening two days looks like something from a video game, as she has yet to record a single bogey in her opening 36 holes.
Speaking after yet another sensational round in Arkansas, the LPGA rookie spoke about her ambitions for the final day of action as she leads the tournament by two shots.
“Today on the first nine holes my shot is so perfect but I couldn’t make some birdies,” said the 22-year-old, “It’s more confidence after nine holes that I can make so many birdies, and I got that”
“I think it’s the first time I hit two 60 scores in a row … I want to try [to get] one more round [in the 60’s] in the third round.”
The Korean duo of Jenny Shin and Kim Sei-Young make up the top five which is dominated by Asian competitors with scores of -11 and -10 respectively.
Maguire’s final round gets underway alongside her playing partner, teenager Chanettee Wannasaen, at 8:30 a.m. local time (14:30 p.m. Irish time.)