Icher ties 62 mark as she seeks first LPGA Tour win

LOS ANGELES • French golfer Karine Icher tied a tournament record with a nine-under 62 on Saturday, to take a one-stroke lead after two rounds of the LPGA ShopRite Classic in Galloway, New Jersey.

The 62 was also a career-low round for the 37-year-old, who had a 36-hole total of 12-under 132.

She was one stroke in front of South Korea's Choi Na Yeon, who carded a 64 and Japan's Haru Nomura, who signed for a 66.

Defending champion Anna Nordqvist was a stroke back on 132 after a 68.

"I made a lot of second shots close to the hole, so made some birdies easier to do," said Icher, who had nine birdies without a bogey, and reckoned her longest birdie putt of the day was 10 feet.

The world No. 58 said she did not know until the final hole that she had tied the single-round scoring record for the tournament achieved previously by Laura Davies, Kang Ji Min and Jennifer Johnson.

"I just try to play easy and not look at the scoreboard, because it doesn't serve me," she said.

"I try to play shot after shot, then it's possible to become like a game to make as many birdies as possible."

She teed off on 10 and after four birdies in her first nine holes she birdied five coming in.

While Icher is seeking her first LPGA Tour title, Nordqvist is chasing the first successful title defence of her career. She has not won since her victory last year, when she trailed Morgan Pressel by one shot heading into the final round. "I feel like I hit a lot of good shots and a lot of good putts today," the Swede said.

"Greens were pretty bumpy and some of my putts even airborne. You've just got to stay patient and tomorrow we are just going to have more similar conditions. So I'm excited to go for it tomorrow."

Nomura, who has won twice this season, said her experience winning in San Francisco in April may stand her in good stead if predicted stormy weather hits.

"Maybe tomorrow very bad weather, so like Swinging Skirts on last day," she said.

"So I keep my patience. Everybody is in the same conditions, so I'll try to play."

AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on June 06, 2016, with the headline 'Icher ties 62 mark as she seeks first LPGA Tour win'. Print Edition | Subscribe