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Highlights from Friday at the U.S Women’s Open at Lancaster Country Club

LANCASTER — Thailand’s Wichanee Meechai emerged as the solo leader Friday at the U.S Women’s Open at Lancaster Country Club, finishing with a second-round score of 3-under 67 to lead with a 4-under 136 for the tournament.

After bogeying the 408-yard, par-4 third going out, Meechai, 31-years-old, made a birdie on the 348-yard, par-4 fourth and a birdie on the 174-yard, par 3 eighth. Coming in, Meechai made four consecutive birdies on holes 10 through 13 before closing out with a bogey on the 424-yard, par-4 15th and a bogey on the 439-yard, par 4 18th.

“To be honest, I don’t know who she is the first four holes, but I’m glad that she came,” Meechai told the USGA. “But it’s just like — I just know myself that I’m so nervous, I have adrenaline. The first four holes, I just played — I just picked the club that’s shorter and hit it hard.

“I think it worked well with this course probably because you cannot be too aggressive with that, and I’m pretty close to the pin, and my putt was just pretty good on this week, I think. So it’s just like — I’m just like surprised, as well.”

25-year-old Andrea Lee of California finished second on the day with a second-round score of 1-under 69. She shot a 1-under 69 on Thursday as well. Lee started the day with four straight birdies on holes 1 through 4, before bogeying the 386-yard, par-4 fifth, as well as a bogey on No. 8. Her only birdie on the back nine was on the 409-yard, par-4 10th, however, Lee double-bogeyed the tantalizing 174-yard, par-3 12th and the 424-yard, par-4 15th.

Despite the bogeys, Lee closed out with a solid par save on the 18th after hitting her approach shot into the sand to the right of the green. After chipping onto the green and coming up 15 feet and four inches short, Lee drained the long put to stay alone at second place for the tournament.

“Trying to be patient on this course, I think it’s the key for me because even though you hit on the green you can three-putt very easily if you’re on the wrong spots, Lee said. “I’m just trying to be patient, and if I can get birdies, I will go for it.”

Heading into the final round two off the leader, Lee said that she understands how hard pars are to come by on a difficult course like LCC and that being consistent with hitting pars will be key.

“Yeah, it’s really tough out there,” Lee said. “The course requires all of your attention on every single golf shot. Just staying super patient and trying to hit fairways, hit greens and take the birdies when I can.

“But par is a really, really good score out here, so that’s what I’m going to try and do on the weekend, just try and make as many pars as I can.”

Following up their strong performances on Thursday, Australia’s Minjee Lee and Japan’s Yuka Saso, both former champions, are tied for third at 1-under 139. Minjee Lee shot a 1-under 69 on Friday, while Saso shot a 1-over 71.

“It feels good, obviously with the tough conditions out there,” Saso said. “I think because we started early, we didn’t have much gust front nine, but I wasn’t playing as well. Like I said yesterday, I had so much luck in putting, and I think not so much today, but I still was able to perform pretty well.”

“I’m really enjoying my time so far,” Minjee Lee said. “The course is a really lovely walk, so a lot of different type of holes, so a lot of character to the course. It’s just nice to look at, and it’s tricky. The rough is up. The greens are fast. That’s what I expect for a U.S. Open. Yeah, I’m enjoying it.”

Minjee Lee Friday at the 2024 U.S Women's Open. (COURTESY OF BILL SNOOK)
Minjee Lee Friday at the 2024 U.S Women’s Open. (COURTESY OF BILL SNOOK)

Eight golfers are tied for fifth at 1-over 141, including 15-year-old amateur Asterisk Talley and 23-year-old amateur Megan Schofill.

Notable players to miss the cut, which was plus-8 or better, include: Nelly Korda (10-over 150), Rose Zhang (11-over 151), 2015 U.S Women’s Open champion In Gee Chun (12-over 152), 2023 U.S Women’s Open champion Allisen Corpuz (12-over 152) and Lexi Thompson (13-over 153).

Source: Berkshire mont

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