DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – China’s Simin Feng and South Korea’s Julie Yang shared the second-round lead at 9-under par Thursday in the LPGA Tour Qualifying Tournament.
Feng had a 2-under 70 on LPGA International’s Hills Course, and Yang shot a 69 on the Jones Course.
The top 20 finishers Sunday will earn full LPGA Tour cards, and Nos. 21-45 and ties will receive conditional status.
“It’s a marathon, not a sprint, but I’m happy with how I’ve played so far,” Yang said. “My only bogey of the day came on the last hole so it was a good day.”
She tied for 21st in the event last season.
“I have the experience from last year and I know what to expect,” Yang said. “Last year was a tough year with conditional status and I feel like my game is ready to go back to the LPGA.”
Christine Song was third at 8 under after a 71 on the Hills Course. Cydney Clanton was another stroke back after a 70 on the Hills Course.
Canada’s Maude-Aimee LeBlanc and Thailand’s Benyapa Niphatsophon were tied for fifth at 6 under. LeBlanc had a 67 on the Hills Course, the best round of the day.
“Everything seemed to be working today,” LeBlanc said. “I didn’t make any putts on the front nine, but I made five birdies on the back and no bogeys so it was just a solid round.”
Niphatsophon shot a 70 on the Jones Course.
Cheyenne Woods, Tiger Woods’ niece, had a 69 on the Hills Course to top the group at 4 under. Mexican amateur Gaby Lopez also was 4 under after a 72 on the Hills Course.
“I’ve been giving myself a lot of opportunities for birdies and I’ve converted a lot of them,” Woods said. “I had six today, which was nice. Overall, it comes down to ball striking and I’ve been keeping it in play and giving myself a lot of chances on the greens.”
She tied for 11th last year.
“It’s nice to know that I’ve played well here before,” Woods said. “I’ve played this course a lot whether it was on Symetra Tour or Q-school. It’s nice to know that I have that history here and also mentally to know that I’ve done it before it’s nice to be able to fall back on that and take that confidence into this year.”