Top-ranked Yani Tseng overcame a double bogey on her ninth hole to shoot a 2-under 70 on Friday for a one-stroke lead over Pat Hurst after the second round of the LPGA Championship in Pittsford, N.Y., the tour's second major of the year.
Hurst had a 67. Morgan Pressel, Minea Blomqvist, and Hee Young Park were 6 under after 69s.
Battling a torrential downpour then a steady drizzle for nearly half her first nine holes, Tseng followed her first-round-best 66 with a gritty performance that put her at 8 under overall. She won the LPGA State Farm Classic two weeks ago for her second LPGA Tour victory of the year, and could become the first player since Lorena Ochoa in 2008 to follow a regular tournament victory with a win in a major.
"I feel a little bit disappointed in my round, but I hung in there," Tseng said. "I missed some short putts, and that's very disappointing. But I still have the lead, and I'm still very excited."
Hurst played in the morning before the heavy rain hit Locust Hill Country Club, and took a one-stroke lead before Tseng teed off on the back nine in the early afternoon.
Tseng shook off the inclement weather by reeling off three straight birdies to open a two-stoke edge over Hurst, but Tseng's game suddenly soured at the par-4 18th after her drive went into the left rough and under a tree, forcing her to punch out.
A nifty approach shot that stopped about three feet from the hole left her with a chance to salvage a bogey, but her putt rimmed out, and left her looking at the hole in disbelief.
She promptly regained her focus and grabbed the lead with a birdie at No. 1.
"I told myself, 'I have to make birdie,'" she said. "I looked up to the sky, kept my head up, and was thinking positive."
Tseng fell back into a tie with Hurst and eventually Pressel after bogeying her 14th hole, but at No. 8 she made the last of her five birdies on the day to head into the weekend with a slim lead.
Unlike Tseng, Hurst gave plenty of credit to her play on the green. She made two long putts on the day, including a 40-footer on her 17th hole (No. 8) that gave her a brief two-stroke edge over Tseng.
Hurst also holed a chip shot from the light fringe on No. 15 after her approach shot went over the green.
Pressel moved into a brief second-place tie with Hurst after she birdied the Par 5, 17th hole, but then bogeyed 18 to send her back into third.
Defending champion Cristie Kerr shot her second straight 72 to make the cut. Michelle Wie also opened with consecutive 72s.
Travelers Championship — Nineteen-year-old UCLA star Patrick Cantlay shot a course-record 10-under 60 — the lowest PGA Tour round ever by an amateur — to take a four-stroke lead at Cromwell, Conn.
The low amateur last week in the U.S. Open, Cantlay tied the tournament record set by Tommy Bolt when the event was played in Wethersfield in 1954.
Cantlay birdied the final two holes at TPC River Highlands to reach 13 under. After shooting a 67 on Friday morning in the rain-delayed first round, he had eight birdies and an eagle in the afternoon.
D.J. Trahan (62), Webb Simpson (65), Vaughn Taylor (66) and Alexandre Rocha (66) were 9 under along with Andres Romero, who completed only five holes in the second round before play was suspended because of darkness just after 8 p.m. Seventy-seven players were unable to finish the round.
An amateur hasn't won a PGA Tour event since Phil Mickelson in the 1991 Northern Telecom Open in Arizona.
Dick's Sporting Goods Open — John Huston and Mark Wiebe shot 7-under 65s to share the lead after the first round in Endicott, N.Y.
Huston, playing just his third Champions Tour event since turning 50 on June 1, had seven birdies on a bogey-free day, nearly making eagle at No. 18 when his second shot at the par 4 hit the flag and stayed out. The tap-in birdie tied him with Wiebe, who also had seven birdies and no bogeys as he began his drive to win his second straight event. Wiebe won at Rock Barn two weeks ago.
BMW International Open — South Africa's George Coetzee birdied four of his last six holes for his second straight 5-under 67 and a share of the lead with Henrik Stenson in Munich.
Stenson followed his opening 64 with a 70 to match Coetzee at 10 under.