LPGA Rookie, Lydia Ko has two victories on the LPGA Tour, but none as a Professional. All of that could change on Sunday at the JTBC Founders Cup. The 16 year-old phenom from New Zealand carded a -5 under par 67 on Saturday and will take a one-shot lead to the first tee at The Wildfire Club at JW Marriott near Phoenix on Sunday afternoon.
The full field of top LPGA players are not going make it easy for the rookie to get her first professional win. Pure Silk Bahamas Champ, Jessica Korda will play along side Ko on Sunday, and is only one stroke back as they play the final round. Defending champ, Stacy Lewis is four strokes back at -2 under par.
“Obviously there’s going to be some nerves,” Ko said of taking the lead into the final round. “Of course, it’s always there any time. But it’s great that you’ve got a one‑shot lead.
“I’ve just got to take the positive out of it and I’m just going to play my own game, if somebody goes crazy low like shooting 10‑under, 9‑under or whatever, it’s not something I can control. So I’m going to control to the most what I can do.”
Lydia Ko played her third round with fellow rookie, Mirim Lee who is another in the long procession of South Korean players making it to the LPGA. Lee couldn’t follow the magic she had on Thursday when she put a 64 on the board, but is tied for second place with Korda shooting a -2 under 70, and will play the final round with South Korean, Sun Young Yoo.
A victory at the first tournament on American soil in 2014 would go a long way in securing the teenagers bid for The Rolex Rookie of the Year Award. She is currently ranked number 4 in the world behind Inbee Park, Suzann Pettersen, and Stacy Lewis respectfully.
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