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Miyazato Retakes Lead in Founders Cup
After opening with a 9-under 63 to take the first-round lead in the RR Donnelley LPGA Founders Cup, nine-time LPGA winner Ai Miyazato found herself again atop the leaderboard in the $1.5 million, 72-hole tournament at Wildfire Golf Club in Phoenix.
The 27-year-old from Japan, who shot a 67 Friday to fall a stroke behind South Korea's Jee Young Lee, fired another 67 to reach 19-under 197, two shots ahead of Stacy Lewis, who posted a 66. Lee shot an even-par 72 Saturday and now sits in solo third at 15-under 201.
Mayazato had five birdies Saturday and has carded 20 birdies, an eagle (in the first round) and three bogeys in 54 holes. Despite such low scores, Lewis still has her within eyeshot entering Sunday's final round.
Coming off a four-victory 2012 campaign that led to her being named the LPGA Tour's Player of the Year, Lewis, the winner in the LPGA Tour's previous 2013 event - the HSBC Women's Champions in Singapore, had three birdies on each the front and back nines.
On Saturday the first 1,000 fans received a bobblehead featuring a likeness of Lewis. On Friday after the second round, Lewis told reporters she has seen an upsurge in fan support thanks to her fine play over the past year. "I can definitely tell it's gone up.
"There's more people following us," added the former Arkansas All-American. "And they're not just cheering for Paula (Creamer) and Yani (Tseng, her playing partners on Friday). I can tell they're cheering for me, which is really cool because I haven't really had that before. So it's definitely more people (who) know who I am and are cheering for me, and it's fun. It's nice to finally have that support."
Six strokes behind Mayazato are Sweden's Anna Nordqvist (67) and Americans Angela Stanford (65), Lizette Salas (66) and Gerina Piller (68).
Sharing eighth at 204 are South Koreans Inbee Park - who shot Saturday's low round, an 8-under 64, and Jimin Kang (67), Americans Nicole Castrale (66) and Sydnee Michaels (67), and Italy's Giulia Sergas (66).
Five players share 13th at 205, including Aussie Karrie Webb, who's last LPGA Tour victory came in the 2011 RR Donnelley LPGA Founders Cup, the first year the tournament was held.
Defending champion Yani Tseng is well behind the leaders. The No. 1-ranked player in women's golf carded her second straight even-par 72 and is now tied for 63rd place at 2-under 214.
For all the scores, visit http://www.lpgascoring.com/public/Leaderboard.