THE COLONIAL, Texas — Charlie Hull started the back nine with two bogeys and then shot an even-par 71 on Saturday to move into a tie with Xiyu “Janet” Lin for the lead heading into the final round of the Ascendant LPGA.
Lynn missed a 15-foot birdie putt that would have given her the lead, settling for a 69 to join Hull at 11-under 202 at Old American Golf Club.
But on a windy day on a hard field in North Texas, the final round figures to be wide open.
Lydia Ko rebounded from a double bogey on the par-3 11th hole to make four birdies over the next six holes to post a 67. Celine Boutier had four birdies on the front nine en route to a 66. .
Another returner is Maddy Szeryk, LPGA rookie from Canada, who started with six missed cuts in a row and has yet to register a top-20 finish.
Lin has been runner-up twice this year in Thailand and Cincinnati as she goes for her first LPGA title after a huge success in her native China.
“I’m happy to put myself in a good position every week. I often make the cut and there are weeks where I feel good and I’m high on the leaderboard,” Lynn said. “I tell myself how good I am now, and tomorrow I’m definitely in the mix, I definitely have a chance. You just have to be patient.”
Hall won on the Ladies European Tour last year, but it’s been six years since her only LPGA Tour title.
Hal, from England, had no complaints about her day except for one swing, and even that didn’t bother her much.
“I was swinging it well, so I wasn’t going to let one bad swing get to me,” she said. “It wasn’t really that bad – they hit the cart path and rolled into the rough and then it was a little bit of a dodgy drop because it was really difficult. It ended up being double and level, so it’s okay.”
Starting the third round two shots behind, Thailand’s 19-year-old Attaya Titikul dropped three shots early and it was a battle to claw his way back. She recorded a 30-foot birdie putt on the par-5 13th and finished with 72 pars.
She was still in the mix three shots back. With last week’s win in Arkansas, Titikul Jin Young could replace Ko in the women’s world rankings.
Hall wasn’t the only player to regret a hole. One bad swing led to a double for Lydia Ko, who was “trying to be nice with the mix.”
“It didn’t discourage me too much, and I knew if I hit some good shots on the next hole I could easily recover from that,” Ko said.
Lexi Thompson’s 69th win on the LPGA Tour has kept her in the hunt for more than three years. She was in a four-shot group that included former US Women’s Open champion A Lim Kim.