Maguire lurking inside Top 10 at Sioux Falls Challenge

Bernie McGuire
Bernie McGuire

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Leona Maguire found herself slipping down the leaderboard at the Sioux Falls GreatLIFE Challenge after her second round 72 didn’t match up to the fantastic 65 she posted in round one.


Maguire, who had been joint leader heading into the second round endured a difficult day with three bogeys and just the one birdie in her round which saw her drop from the top spot into a share for 6th place on three under par.  She remains just three shots off the lead though so still has it all to play for.

Stephanie Meadow was also having a difficult day in South Dakota but her round of 71 was enough to ensure she made the cut on the number and continues to show excellent form on the Symetra Tour. She is currently in second place on the Volvik Race for the Card so the signs are good and a fighting 71 after an opening 73, shows she’s pushing hard.

At the top of the leaderboard it’s an all too familiar position for Dottie Ardina (Laguna, Philippines) who holds a one shot advantage over a group of three players after two rounds. After four runner-up finishes this season, the current No. 1 in the Volvik Race for the Card continues to chase that coveted first victory and instead of the typical 18 holes in front of her at this stage, Ardina has 36 to get the job done.

“I’m just trying to play my game, maybe change some strategies out there with the tough windy conditions,” said Ardina, who carded a 3-under par afternoon that featured an eagle, three birdies and two bogeys. “I was a little disappointed with my drive on No. 18, especially it being a birdie hole. But, I still have two more days to try and make it up. I’m just going to play the course.”

Right behind her is a group of three individuals at 5-under par overall including Linnea Johansson (Bastad, Sweden), as well as a pair of Michigan State University alumna in Allyssa Ferrell (Edgerton, Wisconsin) and Liz Nagel (DeWitt, Michigan). Coming off a Symetra Tour career-best solo third finish at the FireKeepers Casino Hotel Championship, Johansson is taking advantage of the opportunities her positive play has led to. 

“I have been playing pretty solid all year, but now toward the end I’ve been able to get everything working together at the same time,” said Johansson, following a bogey-free, 4-under par 66 out of the morning wave today. “I feel pretty confident out there. I’ve had momentum going and know I can be up there fighting for the victory.”

A total of 68 players made the cut of 4-over par to swing into the weekend in the Mount Rushmore State with only 24 players sitting at even par or better entering the third round.

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