Ko Hataoka shares LA Open lead in Wilshire CC claim | LPGA

LOS ANGELES (AP) – Jin Young Koo had a five-back fly in the 7-under 64 class in claiming the Wilshire Country Club for a share of Friday’s second-round lead with NASA Hataoka at the DIO Implant LA Open.

Five strokes behind first-round leader Alison Lee After 71, seeded Koe moved up to center for her second win of the season in the first of two consecutive LPGA Tour events in the Los Angeles area.

“I was in really good shape today,” Coe said. “I wasn’t expecting to play really well today because it’s always difficult to play this course in the afternoon. But my shot was good, so I’m happy with it.”

Hataoka flew her last three holes for a 68 to match Kou’s at 7 under.

Taking a hit in the ninth inning, Ko Birdied Nos.11-14 and added her eighth birdie of the day at 4 on 17.

“I didn’t think I played 5 under nine defences,” Coe said. “I didn’t know it. I was in the zone.”

The 26-year-old South Korean star won her 13th LPGA Tour title in Singapore early last month. She won five times last year.

“I have two more rounds and no one knows how it will go,” Coe said. “So work hard and focus on it and start getting it”

Hataoka had seven birds and four ghosts. The 23-year-old Japanese player racked up five wins on the LPGA Tour, winning twice last season.

“The wind was very strong,” Hayoka said. “The greens are very tight and tight. So my plan was to hit the green, not try to be too aggressive. In the background nine, the wind got a bit weaker, so I was able to hit the pin.”

Hannah Greene finished third at 5 under 5 after a 67-year-old ghost-free. The Australian won her two LPGA Tour titles in 2019.

“I’m very happy,” Green said. “I think today’s round felt like it was way below what it was. I was pretty solid in my position all day which was fine because yesterday I had a couple of three throws.”

Fellow Australian Minji Lee, the 2019 winner, had 68 matches to match Heiji Kang (69) in the 4-under. Inbee Park (67) topped the group at 3 under.

“You have to be really careful how you play the slots – and you can’t be too greedy,” Park said. “Although the course is short, it is really challenging.”

Lee was two years old, having opened No. 66 with No. 74.

Defending champion Brooke Henderson, who plays alongside Coe, fired 76-72 to miss the score.

Palos Verdes Championship next week.

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