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Sorenstam Storms in First Place

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. -- Annika Sorenstam fired a 5-under 67 Saturday to grab a three-stroke lead through three rounds of the ADT Championship. Sorenstam stands at 5-under-par 211.
Overnight co-leader Meg Mallon posted an even-par 72 and shares second place at 2-under-par 214 with Cristie Kerr, who shot a third-round 71.
Beth Daniel carded a 4-under 68 to move into a tie for fourth at 1-under- par 215. She is joined there by Se Ri Pak, who shot a 72. Rosie Jones and Michele Redman are one stroke further back at even par.
Sorenstam, who owns six LPGA Tour wins this season and 17 over the past two years, began the day two shots off the pace. She birdied the first from four feet out to get to minus-1 and her five-foot birdie putt on No. 6 gave her a share of the lead.
However, she quickly fell three shots back as she bogeyed the seventh at Trump International Golf Club and Laura Davies, playing behind Sorenstam, holed out for eagle at the sixth.
Sorenstam moved within two strokes as she came right back with a birdie at the eighth. Davies fell off the pace with a triple bogey on No. 8 and the lead fell to Jones.
Jones then bogeyed the 10th to drop back into a share of the lead with Sorenstam and Kerr. Sorenstam moved into the lead by herself at 4 under with a kick-in birdie on the 14th, while Jones fell off the pace with a double bogey at the 12th.
Sorenstam seized control with a two-putt birdie at the 15th, that moved her to minus-5. Her lead was two strokes at that point, but grew to three as Mallon bogeyed the 16th and Kerr the 17th.
'I'm very happy the way I played today,' said Sorenstam, the defending champion. 'I hit a lot of greens. The winds picked up a little more than I expected and then it seemed like it died, and then when I came to 16, again it picked up. So again I thought it was a tricky day.'
Despite what some of her foes did, Sorenstam was able to stay away from some big numbers that hurt other players.
'I think you've got to play smart here,' Sorenstam said. 'Play for the big areas, the wind really plays a big role here. It seems like we had cross wind on every hole. I was just trying to play smart. Sometimes I laid up where in the past I might have tried to go for it. But it's just not worth it. I was just trying to play smart.'
Kerr managed just one birdie, at No. 6, on her opening nine to move to 2 under. Around the turn, the 26-year-old birdied the 14th to climb to minus-3. However, she dropped a shot on 17 to fall to minus-2.
'I played really solidly this week,' said Kerr. 'I put a new routine into play and it's holding up under pressure, which is good. I played really very, very well coming down the stretch.'
Mallon fell out of the lead as she bogeyed the first and fell farther off the pace with another bogey on No. 8. Around the turn, Mallon climbed back into contention with three consecutive birdies from the 12th. She slipped back to 2-under when she bogeyed the 16th.
Laura Diaz, the first-round leader, stands alone in eighth place at 1-over-par 217. Patricia Meunier-Lebouc, Sophie Gustafson and Becky Morgan are two strokes further back at three-under-par 219. Grace Park follows that trio at plus-4.
Juli Inkster and Karrie Webb are tied at 5-over-par 221, with Lorie Kane right behind them at 6 over.
Davies, who shared the overnight lead, had an up-and-down day. She mixed two birdies and two bogeys over her first five holes. The Englishwoman holed out for eagle at the par-4 sixth but she stumbled around the turn with a triple bogey at No. 8 and a double bogey on the ninth.
On the back side, Davies birdied 10 and 15, but struggled to close out the round. She double bogeyed the 16th, quintuple bogeyed the 17th and bogeyed the last to finish with a 9-over 81. She shares 16th place at 7-over-par 223 with U.S. Women's Open runner-up Angela Stanford, Mi Hyun Kim and two-time winner this season Rachel Teske.
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