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Sports >  International sports

Pernilla Lindberg takes 3-shot lead in ANA Inspiration

UPDATED: Sat., March 31, 2018

By John Nicholson Associated Press

RANCHO MIRAGE, Calif. – Pernilla Lindberg took advantage of playing partner Sung Hyun Park’s late collapse to take a three-stroke lead Saturday in the ANA Inspiration.

Lindberg shot a 2-under 70 on another hot and mostly calm day at Mission Hills, putting the 31-year-old Swede in position to make the major championship her first professional victory.

Amy Olson was second after a 68. The 25-year-old former North Dakota State star – and the LPGA Tour’s only certified public accountant – also is seeking her first win as a pro.

Lindberg was two strokes behind Park after the fourth-ranked South Korean player made her third straight birdie on the par-5 11th. The group was then put on the clock for slow play, and Park dropped five strokes in the next five holes.

The U.S. Women’s Open champion bogeyed Nos. 12 and 13, had a double bogey on the par-4 14th after taking two shots to get out of the back bunker, and bogeyed the 16th.

Lindberg scrambled for pars on the first four holes on the back nine, ran in an 18-foot birdie putt on 14 and made a 25-footer for par on 15 for a two-stroke swing. Lindberg bogeyed the par-3 17th and then hit a wedge to 5 feet to set up a birdie on the par-5 18th. She broke the tournament 54-hole mark at 14-under 202.

Park finished with a 74 to fall into a tie for third at 10 under. She shot a 64 on Friday for a share of the second-round lead with Lindberg.

Inbee Park, the 2013 winner and a seven-time major champion, had a 67 to get into the group at 10 under with Moriya Jutanugarn (66), Jennifer Song (68), Jodi Ewart Shadoff (69) and Charley Hull (69). Inbee Park won the Founders Cup two weeks ago in Phoenix, playing the final 36 holes in 14 under.

Lindberg rebounded from her first bogey of the week with a 20-foot par save on the par-4 sixth. The former Oklahoma State player made a 35-footer for birdie on the par-3 eighth.

Olson, from Oxbow, North Dakota, had five birdies and a bogey. Ranked 218th in the world, she won an NCAA-record 20 titles for the Bison.

Ayako Uehara (70) was 9 under, and top-ranked Shanshan Feng (67) and Jessica Korda (73) were another stroke back.

Stanford sophomore Albane Valenzuela shot 71 to get to 7 under and top the four amateurs to make the cut. Minjee Lee also was 7 under after a 64, the best round of the day.

Lexi Thompson was tied for 17th at 6 under after a 70. She won in 2015 and lost a playoff to So Yeon Ryu a year ago after being penalized four strokes during the final round for a rules violation the day before.

Michelle Wie was 2 under after a 72. She has fought dizziness caused by a virus.

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