St. Albans, MO – It is 36 holes down, 18 to go at the 91st LNGA Amateur Championship from The Country Club of St. Albans. The field has been cut to low-60 and ties before the final round Wednesday morning.
Lilly Thomas fired a 6-under 66 on moving day to jump into first place on the leaderboard. The junior at Tulsa sits at 8-under overall (70-66–136) and has a four-shot lead over the rest of the field.
Thomas went bogey-free 7-under her first 16 holes until her first and only miscue of the day came on the par 4 17th. Going 2-under through the first nine, the Bentonville, Arkansas, native carded three birdies in a row after the turn.
“I was hitting my driver well which gave me a lot of confidence heading into my second shots that I didn’t have much yesterday,” Thomas said. “When I had a wedge in my hand, I capitalized on that and made several birdies that way. Another under par round is definitely out there, some people will shoot under par so have to go low to get it done tomorrow.”
Leila Raines is one of two at 4-under overall. The sophomore at Michigan State came out of the gates with a birdie on No. 1 today. 2-under at the turn, Raines went 1-over on the back to turn in another round under par (69-71–140). She is one of only four in the field of 84 players to shoot in red figures both days so far.
18-hole leader Ashley Lau shot a 1-over 73 today and is in a tie for second with Raines. The senior at Michigan has a two-day total of 4-under 140 (67-73–140).
“First round was an A+, today was a battle out there,” Lau said. “I got a few unlucky breaks on the course; it was painful to watch my balls getting rejected a lot of times but there’s always tomorrow. It’s going to be an exciting day.”
Thomas, Raines and Lau will make up the final group in Wednesday, going off No. 1 at 9:20 a.m. CT.
Kelly Su of Northwestern fired a 4-under 68, good for the second-lowest round of the day, to move into solo fourth place with a two-day total of 3-under 141 (73-68).
Eleven players are within eight shots of the lead.
Northwestern University moved into first place for the Howell Team Trophy. The team of Kelly Su and Jennifer Cai are 8-under collectively through two rounds (141-139–280). University of Tulsa is one shot back after Lilly Thomas’ 6-under round.
Jennifer Cai leads the race for the Junior Medal after posting back-to-back 1-under 71s.
Final round begins Wednesday morning with split tee times beginning at 7:30 a.m. CT.
For updates throughout the final two days of play, follow the LNGA on Twitter @LNGA_Golf.