Sports

Pressel maintains lead at ShopRite LPGA

Galloway, NJ (SportsNetwork.com) - Morgan Pressel used a 2-under 69 in Saturday's second round to remain in the lead going into the final day of the ShopRite LPGA Classic.

Pressel, a two-time winner on the LPGA Tour who held the first-round lead as well, finished 36 holes at 7-under-par 135, one shot better than Anna Nordqvist. Pressel is seeking her first win since the 2008 Kapalua LPGA Classic.

"I definitely am the one out there with the target on my back, but that's the thing about golf," said Pressel. "It's obviously easier said than done, but my game plan so far has been working, and I'm really, really focusing on my golf swing right now, trying to make the best swing that I can on every shot."

Nordqvist was one of four players to finish round one a shot behind Pressel and the Swede also carded a 69 on the Bay Course at Stockton Seaview Hotel and Golf Club to remain within one at minus-6. Nordqvist is alone in second.

Kelly Shon (68), Catriona Matthew (70), Pernilla Lindberg (70), Christel Boeljon (70) and Gerina Piller (70) are all two shots further back at 4-under 138.

Pressel was consistent throughout most of her round and was able to keep her lead when all was said and done.

After making a pair of pars to start, Pressel rolled in her first birdie at the par-5 third. Three holes later Pressel drained another birdie at the par-4 sixth, pushing her up to minus-7.

Pressel went on cruise control for a while with six straight pars from seven before she tripped to her first and only bogey on No. 13.

Now down to 6-under, Pressel finished up well with four pars and a birdie on the par-4 16th. That gave her a 2-shot lead at the time before Nordqvist later pulled within one.

"It was a tough day to play. I think that wind tomorrow is going to be pretty similar, about 20 miles-an-hour or so, and I was able to keep the ball in front of me really today," Pressel said. "I only hit a couple poor shots, one on 13 where I ended up having to pitch out after a poor drive, but the wind is tough to club, but it's also tough to commit, and I think that I did a pretty good job committing to all the shots today, committing to my target lines."

Nordqvist played her first 10 holes at 1-under as she made nine pars and a birdie on No. 3

She ran into trouble when she bogeyed back-to-back holes at 11 and 12, dropping the 27-year-old back to 3-under.

Nordqvist saved her best for late in the round, however. Following a trio of pars from 13, Nordqvist poured in three straight birdies from No. 16 to finish up strong and get her to within one of the lead.

NOTES: The start of round two was delayed for an hour due to fog ... Pressel has two top-10 finishes, a second and third, in 11 starts this season ... Nordqvist has four career victories, including two last season at the Honda LPGA Thailand and the Kia Classic ... Two-time winner and defending champion Stacy Lewis (73) is tied for 66th at 3-over 145 and narrowly made the cut ... With the cut falling at 3-over 145, 81 players advanced to play the final round ... Among those who missed the cut were Michelle Wie, Lexi Thompson and Brittany Lincicome.