Inbee Park birdied three of her last four holes Thursday to shoot a second consecutive 5-under 66 and take a one-shot lead over Stacy Lewis in women’s golf. Here’s where things stand through 36 holes in Rio:
Leaderboard: Park (-10), Lewis (-9), Charley Hull (-8), Brooke Henderson (-8), Marianne Skarpnord (-7), Nicole Broch Latsen (-7), Candie Kung (-7)
What it means: After struggling to qualify for the LPGA Hall of Fame and taking two months off to rest her ailing thumb, Park has suddenly re-emerged as her old self in Rio. One under at the turn, Park made five birdies during a bogey-free back nine to take a one-shot lead. She’ll be chased this weekend by Lewis, a two-time major champion and former world No.1 mired in a two-year winless drought. The 11-time LPGA winner last tasted victory in June 2014 and has recorded eight runner-up finishes since. Most recently, she was a member of the U.S. team that won the International Crown last month, and just two weeks ago, on Aug. 6, she married Gerrod Chadwell, the women’s golf coach at the University of Houston. The two LPGA standard bearers, Park and Lewis, will also face challenges from two of the game’s burgeoning young talents, the 20-year-old Hull and 18-year-old Henderson.
Round of the day: After a first-round 70, Lewis made 11 birdies, a bogey and a double. That double at the par-3 14th was the only thing that stopped her from circling her last six holes in a row. The round ties her with Australia’s Marcus Fraser for the lowest round recorded in men’s or women’s Olympic golf.
Best of the rest: Canada’s Henderson flew up the leaderboard with a bogey-free 7-under-par 64. The KPMG Women’s PGA winner turned in 2 under and birdied five of her last six holes, including each of her last four, to move within two of the lead.
Biggest disappointments: They’re by no means out of it, but Lydia Ko and Lexi Thompson both underwhelmed Thursday with rounds 1-under 70 and even-par 71, respectively. The No. 1 and No. 4 players in the world sit seven shots back, at 3 under par.
Shot of the day: After laying up from the bunker at the par-5 18th, Lewis played this shot from 198 yards to set up her final birdie of the day and tie for the Olympic record.
Quote of the day: “I felt so good over the putter, just making everything.” - Lewis