Nanna Koerstz Madsen of Denmark bounced back from a bogey and double bogey at the seventh and eighth holes to post a 3-under-par 69 and take a three-stroke lead after the third round of the JTBC Classic in Carlsbad, Calif.
At 14 under, she will tee off Sunday with a three-shot advantage on South Korea’s Na Rin An.
Madsen sandwiched six birdies around her brief 3-over stretch, including two at the ninth and 10th holes at Aviara Golf Club to get back on track.
“It does tell me that I’ve come a long way,” Madsen said. “Normally I probably would’ve freaked out after that (hole) 8. I was not happy with my double bogey on 8, but I knew there was a lot of chances out there on the back nine as well. So I just got to continue doing what I was doing. I was still hitting good shots.”
Madsen is looking for her second LPGA Tour victory after breaking through for her first at the Honda LPGA Thailand earlier this month.
An, a rookie who earned medalist honors at the LPGA Q-Series last December, put pressure on Madsen late. She eagled the par-4 16th hole to tie the lead and birdied the par-5 17th to touch 14 under for the tournament, but ended her round with a disastrous triple bogey 7 to drop back and finish a round of 69.
World No. 1 Jin Young Ko of South Korea (70), Maude-Aimee Leblanc of Canada (70) and Pajaree Anannarukarn of Thailand (69) are in a tie for third at 10 under.
Lilia Vu made a hole-in-one at the par-3 third hole to help herself card the round of the day: a 7-under 65 that vaulted her to 9 under for the event. With the pin 97 yards away, Vu hit her 50-degree wedge toward the back of the green and watched as her ball caught the back slope and fed to the hole.
“I basically said, ‘Oh my God,’ and then I was I was actually really glad that I hit the hole,” Vu said, “because I wasn’t sure because it was spinning back so much and the water is right in front, so I was just thankful.”
Vu is in a five-way tie for sixth with Janie Jackson (69), Japan’s Nasa Hataoka (68), England’s Charley Hull (68) and South Korea’s Hye-Jin Choi (72).
Jeongeun Lee6 of South Korea and Kelly Tan of Malaysia also made an ace at the third hole.
–Field Level Media