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Henderson charges into a share of lead at ANA Inspiration

RANCHO MIRAGE, Calif. (AP) – Brooke Henderson stored pouring in birdies as she tried to erase as a lot as she might from a six-shot deficit within the ANA Inspiration. Nelly Korda was attempting to let off steam within the desert warmth after dropping three pictures in two holes.

Henderson finally cooled down. Korda regained her contact.

Competitors since they had been youngsters, they wound up tied for the lead Saturday going into a closing spherical at Mission Hills that might be fairly a present.

The 23-year-old Henderson, whose 9 LPGA titles already are probably the most by a Canadian, tied the match file with a 30 on the entrance 9 and settled for a 7-under 65. She goes for her second main.

Korda, the 22-year-old daughter of Grand Slam tennis champion Petr Korda, rallied with three birdies on the again 9 for a 71 and joined Henderson at 12-under 204.

The No. 3 participant in girls’s golf, Korda has by no means had a higher shot at her first main.

“It’s exciting,” Korda stated. “It’s one of the reasons why you play golf is you play with the top players in the world, and playing for a major championship doesn’t get any better than that.”

They shall be joined within the closing group by Katherine Kirk, who quietly went about her enterprise with a 67 that landed the Australian within the closing group, two pictures behind.

Also two shot behind had been Mirim Lee (71) and Lexi Thompson (69), who was poised to make a run when she hit wedge to a foot for birdie on the ninth gap. That was her final birdie of the spherical. Even so, the 25-year-old Thompson was in good place to make one other leap in Poppie’s Pond.

“Just struggled a bit with the putter on the back nine,” Thompson stated. “Gave myself a bunch of good looks. Hitting it well. Just need to keep giving myself chances and I will have a chance tomorrow.”

Korda started with a two-shot lead and fell three pictures again with a tough stretch on the entrance 9, significantly the sixth gap by hitting 5-wood by the green into the gnarly tough and never getting over the water, resulting in double bogey.

She fell as many as three pictures behind Henderson, who hit 3-wood to 12 ft for eagle on the par-5 second gap, and closed out the entrance 9 with 4 birdies in a six-hole stretch.

“Sort of an easy start which was nice, and relaxed a little bit,” Henderson stated. “Being moving day, I wanted to get a solid round out there and try to climb the leaderboard as much as possible. Still a lot of golf to be played, but nice to see my name up there. And hopefully, tomorrow I can post a similar round.”

It was the most well liked day of the match, the temperature climbing simply previous 100 levels late within the day, helped by a delicate haze from California fires that stored the solar from burning brighter. Korda was amongst these with an umbrella on the again 9 to fend off the solar.

Korda started to claw her means again with a birdie on the par-5 eleventh, a hole wedge to three ft for birdie on the twelfth and a pitching wedge simply over the bunker that rolled out to five ft for birdie on the fifteenth, regaining a share of the lead.

Thompson, 4 behind to start out the spherical, received again within the sport shortly with three birdies in 5 holes, and one other birdie on the par-5 ninth had her headed the correct route. But that was the final birdie she made. Her greatest putt was a 15-footer for par on No. 13.

Ten gamers had been separated by 4 pictures, a group that included Carlota Ciganda at 9-under 207 and former Mission Hills winner Stacy Lewis one other shot again. Both shot 67,

Also at 8-under 208 was U.S. Women’s Amateur champion Rose Zhang, who shot a 68. The 17-year-old received the Amateur final month over Gabriela Ruffels, who was at 6-under 210 in a sturdy exhibiting by amateurs this week.

Henderson closed out her entrance 9 with a pitch to 2 ft for birdie and a 30, and was solely dissatisfied she didn’t decide up extra on the again 9. No matter. She was tied for the lead, greater than she would have anticipated when she teed off. And whereas she considered this spherical as transferring day, Sunday may not be a lot totally different with so many gamers nonetheless within the combine.

That contains Kirk, a 38-year-old Aussie with three LPGA victories and one runner-up in her earlier 59 appearances in main championships. She opened with two fast birdies and did sufficient to consider what it will be prefer to win the ANA Inspiration and make the leap into Poppie’s Pond across the 18th inexperienced.

“It’s so stinking hot out here and it would be great to cool off,” Kirk stated. “I have a lot of hard work, and there are a lot of great players on the leaderboard so I’m probably going to have to go low tomorrow and it’s going to take a really good number. But anything is possible in this game.”

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