Has any player ever walked off the course after shooting a good score and thought they couldn’t have gone lower?
Jessica Korda shot 6-under 65 in the second round of the Hugel-Air Premia L.A. Open. There were no bogeys on Thursday, but she felt there could have been a few more birdies.
“Well, it's going to sound crazy, but I actually lipped out a good amount out there today, so it actually could have been lower,” she said.
“Just had a little bit of a harder time with some speed today. Other than that, it's just another good day.”
Another good day on the heels of a course-record 64 on Day 1. At 13 under par, she has a three-stroke lead over world No. 1 Jin Young Ko (65). Sei Young Kim (66) is a shot further back at 9 under, with Brooke Henderson (65) and Angela Stanford (66) at 8 under.
Korda, 27, picked up her sixth career LPGA win at the season-opening Tournament of Champions. She’s looking to become the first two-time winner on tour this year, something she hasn’t accomplished since 2014.
She’s called her play this week “boring,” which means she’s been finding fairways and hitting greens – 33 of 36 so far this week. That’s led to 14 birdies and just one bogey.
“Honestly, I think I made more par saves [on Thursday] that stand out to me,” she said, “making those 5-footers for par, and that's kind of what counts and kept me in it.”
The lack of mistakes is the difference between this week and last. She made 18 birdies and an eagle at the Lotte Championship and still tied for 48th.
For that matter, she made 17 birdies at the ANA Inspiration and finished at 3 under par.
But there has been only one square on her scorecard after 36 holes at Wilshire Country Club.
“Being able to make a lot of birdies helps. I know the last couple events I've made a lot of bogeys, as well, which has kind of killed my momentum a little bit, and that's the only thing we're trying to change a little bit is maybe play a little bit smarter and starting to get a little bit more consistent with my swing, which is really nice,” she said.
“That's really all it is. It's just making some putts, and it's been nice. I can't complain, really.”
Korda's sister, Nelly, was at 7 under par before a bogey-par-triple bogey-bogey stretch on the back nine sent her to 3 under.
Last week's winner, Lydia Ko, was 10 shots better in Round 2 than in Round 1, shooting 68. But, at 4 over par, she missed the cut. ANA champion Patty Tavatanakit (4 over) also missed the cut as did Michelle Wie West (5 over).