So Yeon Ryu shoots a 2-under 70 for 1-shot LPGA lead at Lake Merced

So Yeon Ryu shot a 2-under-par 70 on Friday at Lake Merced Golf Club in Daly City to take a one-stroke lead over Sei Young Kim and Ryann O’Toole in the LPGA Tour’s Mediheal Championship.

Tied for the first-round lead with Eun-Hee Ji and Anne van Dam after a 67, Ryu chipped in for birdie from the fringe on the par-3 12th, but gave back the stroke with a bogey on the par-4 16th after advancing a chip from deep rough only to the fringe.

“It was just a grinding day,” Ryu said. “And I just grinded and grinded and grinded. … I was pretty mentally tough.”

Ryu was at 7-under 137 on the tree-lined course with tricky greens made tougher with shifting wind.

“It would feel like the wind was strong into it, then all of a sudden it stopped,” Ryu said. “So, I guess pin position and wind direction made it really tough to play today. But I shot 2-under par, never complain about that.”

Ryu has six LPGA Tour victories, winning major titles in the 2011 U.S. Women’s Open and 2017 ANA Inspiration.

“I always just keep telling myself, ‘You’ve done it enough, you’ve done it enough to know how to do it, so you can do it.’”Ryu said.

O’Toole birdied three of her last three holes in the afternoon in a bogey-free 65, matching the best score the first two days.

“I probably struck it the best I had all year yesterday and I just couldn’t buy a putt,” O’Toole said. “And then today I just struck it even better and a little closer even, and stayed patient and just collected birdies along the way.”

Kim had a bogey-free 66, playing through back pain. She closed her afternoon round with a birdie on the par-5 ninth.

“I’m putting well and second shot, drive, tee shot, this course is really important tee shot,” Kim said. “I’m very aggressive at play, but some holes I have to avoid the pin. That’s not my style, but I have to.”

Ji (72), Inbee Park (69), Na Yeon Choi (67) and He Yong Choi(65) and Charley Hull (70) were two strokes back at 5 under.

PGA Tour: Jason Dufner chipped in for birdie to start his day and holed a 40-foot birdie toward the end for an 8-under 63 that gave him a one-shot lead after two rounds of the Wells Fargo Championship in Charlotte, N.C.

Dufner matched his career-low score on the PGA Tour, which he last shot at Oak Hill in 2013 on his way to winning the PGA Championship. Former Cal golfer Max Homa also had a 63 with birdies on his last two holes, while Joel Dahmen had a 66. They were one back.

Rory McIlroy, playing the other side of Quail Hollow, was stride for stride with Dufner before finishing double bogey-bogey, settling for a 70. That left him five shots out of the lead.

PGA Tour Champions: Ken Tanigawa birdied the first three holes for a share of the lead with Tim Petrovic when first-round play in the PGA Tour Champions’ Insperity Invitational was suspended because of lightning and heavy rain in The Woodlands, Texas.

This post was originally posted at https://www.sfgate.com/sports/golf/article/So-Yeon-Ryu-shoots-a-2-under-70-for-1-shot-LPGA-13818740.php.

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