Paula Creamer moved into position to end a two-year victory drought by shooting a six-under 65 to take a two-stroke lead into the final round of the Kingsmill Championship on Saturday.
The nine-time US LPGA Tour winner chipped in for birdie on the par-four 13th in her bogey-free round on Kingsmill’s River Course. She had a 16-under 197 total, the lowest 54-hole score in the history of the event.
“I haven’t won in two years. That feels like forever, but it also feels like yesterday when I did just win, so it’s kind of a give or take,” Creamer said. “I’ve been in contention a lot, so it’s not that I’m not used to this, that’s for sure. No matter what happens tomorrow, I’m just going out there and continue what I’ve been doing this whole year and it’s just starting to come together and one round isn’t going to make or break it, that’s for sure.”
Second-round leader Shin Ji-yai was second after a 69.
Shin also is winless since 2010.
“Well, I think when I am following the leader it makes me feel better because I know the target,” Shin said. “When I start on the leaderboard, when I miss a shot, it make more pressure. So I really feel very comfortable with my position at the moment.”
Dewi Claire Schreefel and Danielle Kang were 12 under. Schreefel had a 69, and Kang shot 70.
Second-ranked Staci Lewis was 11 under, along with Ai Miyazato and Azahara Munoz. Lewis shot a 68, Miyazato had a 67 and Munoz a 69. Lewis and Miyazato each have two victories this year, and Munoz also won this season.
Two strokes behind Shin entering the round, Creamer birdied Nos. 3-5, added a birdie on the par-four 11th, chipped in on 13 and made her sixth birdie of the round on the par-five 15th.
“I hit the ball really well.” Creamer said. “I gave myself tons of opportunities, and when I did get into a little bit of trouble, I just kind of took my medicine and scrambled out some pars. Just hitting it really solid, so I’m able to go at a lot of these flagsticks and giving myself within 10 feet on a lot of holes.
“You’re not going to make all of them, but you’ll make most, especially with the confidence that I have right now in my putting,” she said
Shin bogeyed the par-three second hole and par-four fourth, then rallied with birdies on Nos. 8-9 and 11-12.
“It was a long tough day,” Shin said.
Taiwan’s Candie Kung carded a 70 for 205, while her compatriots, Amy Hung and Lin Tzu-chi, missed the cut.
Additional reporting by staff writer