Tue, 24 Nov 2020

McDonald rides birdie spree to LPGA Drive On lead

Field Level Media
24 Oct 2020, 10:40 GMT+10

A string of five consecutive birdies on Friday lifted Ally McDonald to the lead at the midpoint of the LPGA Drive On Championship in Greensboro, Ga.

McDonald shot a 4-under-par 68 in the second round at Reynolds Lake Oconee's Great Waters Course, leaving her at 10-under 134. She holds a one-shotlead on first-round co-leader Danielle Kang, who shot 70 on Friday, and the Philippines' Bianca Pagdanganan, who carded a 67.

Thailand's Ariya Jutanugarn (second-round 69) holds fourth place at 8 under, and England's Mel Reid (68), Sweden's Pernilla Lindberg (69) and Australia's Katherine Kirk (65) are tied for fifth at 7 under.

Jennifer Song, who was tied with Kang atop the leaderboard after the opening round, shot a 3-over 75 on Friday, leaving her tied for 17th at 4 under.

McDonald, starting on the back nine, was 1 under on the day through seven holes before birdieing the next five. However, she followed with a par, consecutive bogeys, then three pars to end her day.

"I don't want to discredit my round just because I played a couple bad holes towards the end of the day," she said. "I put myself in a great position to hit some really good shots and it was really solid for I guess would've been 13 holes. Just ... two of the last five were just kind of few bad swings.

"I'm still striking the ball great and I'm looking forward to the next two days."

McDonald has never before led an LPGA event after two rounds. The Mississippi State alumna is looking for her first tour victory -- and if she gets it this week, it would happen Sunday on her 28th birthday.

"Every year we're (normally) in Asia for my birthday, so to be in Georgia, it's really exciting," she said. "I am going to have my mom and dad here. They brought a cake in already from home. We've got cake. So it would be pretty special. It would be a great birthday present. I'm not going to get too far ahead of myself regardless of what it looks like the next two days."

Kang's round featured a bogey followed by two birdies on the front nine, with the same pattern repeated on the back nine.

"Today played differently than yesterday because I teed off early and the golf course played longer," Kang said. "There is dew on (the greens) so it was a little slower. Towards the end it started drying up, so I had to adjust."

Pagdanganan recorded six birdies and one bogey.

"I feel pretty good about my round," Pagdanganan said. "I guess off the tee I wasn't that confident, but my iron shots definitely saved me today. I was making a couple putts. I missed some, but I was able to bounce back and just drop some birdies."

--Field Level Media

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