Alfredsson Grabs Lead

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LINCOLN, Calif. -- Helen Alfredsson fired an 8-under 64 Saturday to tie the course and tournament record and take a one-stroke lead through three rounds of the Longs Drugs Challenge. Alfredsson finished 54 holes at 11-under-par 205.
 
Pat Hurst, Jung Yeon Lee and Rachel Teske each carded rounds of 6-under 66 in the third round to move into a tie for second place. They are joined at 10-under-par 206 by overnight leader Se Ri Pak, who shot a 1-under 71.
 
Alfredsson began the day six shots behind Pak, who had set the course record Friday with her 64. The Swede got going with a 15-foot birdie putt at the par-4 third. After a pair of pars, Alfredsson rolled in a short birdie at the sixth.
 
She came right back with a 15-foot birdie putt on the seventh at Lincoln Hills Club. The 38-year-old made it three in a row when she two-putted for birdie at No. 8.
 
Around the turn, she converted back-to-back birdies from the 11th to climb to 9-under. Alfredsson birdied the par-3 14th to move to minus-10. She then joined Pak in first place with a five-foot birdie at the last.
 
'I just made some putts today and got a little lucky,' said Alfredsson, whose last win came at the 1998 Welch's/Circle K Championship. 'It's hard to explain when you're going through the year I have. I guess I just was able to keep focused a little bit better.'
 
Alfredsson has had just two top-10's all season and ranks just 152nd in putting average.
 
'I kind of feel like it's my first event of the season,' Alfredsson said. 'For the longest time, the only thing I wanted to do was win.'
 
Pak, who led by one entering the round, birdied the par-3 fourth to get to 10-under. After a birdie at the eighth, she dropped a shot at No. 9.
 
On the back side, she birdied the 11th to get to minus-11. However, she stumbled to a bogey at the 13th that dropped her out of the lead. The South Korean birdied the 15th to move back into a share of the lead.
 
Pak faltered to her third bogey of the round at the 16th as she finished one shot behind Alfredsson.
 
'I was kind of off today and missed a couple shots early,' said Pak. 'I made some pretty good up-and-downs and was not comfortable with my putting. Today was pretty much a big up and down day, but I hung in there. There's one more day to go and I feel great.'
 
Teske made just one birdie on the front nine, but blazed to a 5-under 31 on the back nine with three birdies and an eagle.
 
Hurst carded four birdies and one bogey on both nines en route to her 66.
 
Lee posted two birdies, an eagle and a bogey over her opening nine holes. On the back nine, she notched four birdies and a bogey to join logjam in second place.
 
Grace Park carded a five-under 67 to move into sixth place by herself at 9- under-par 207. Sophie Gustafson and Catriona Matthew are one stroke further back at minus-eight.
 
Defending champion Cristie Kerr is well off the pace at 4-under-par 212.
 

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