Angela Stanford of the US shot a five-under 67 to take a two-stroke lead over Inbee Park after the second round of the Lorena Ochoa Invitational on Friday. The winner of the inaugural tournament in 2008, Stanford had an 11-under 133 total at the Guadalajara Country Club.
Taiwan’s Yani Tseng shot a one-under 71 to tie for 12th with a combined three-under 141, while compatriot Candie Kung faded to finish the day tied for fourth on seven-under after sharing the lead after the first round.
Stanford had six birdies — four in a row on 7 to 10 — and one bogey. She hit 12 of 14 fairways and 16 of the 18 greens in regulation.
“I’ve said all along I love the golf course,’’ Stanford said. “I think anytime you feel extremely comfortable on the golf course, you tend to relax.’’
Stanford is a fan favorite, as evidenced by the “Angie, Angie’’ chants as she proceed down a long line of fans waiting for her autograph.
“It’s kind of fun,’’ Stanford said. “I think this week is so much fun because it’s so relaxed, and it’s so laid back. Seems like, when things like that happen, it means that the fans are having fun. So that’s good.’’
Park, from South Korea, had a 68. She has two victories this year and leads the money list. Cristie Kerr was third at eight-under after a 69. She’s winless since the 2010 LPGA State Farm Classic.
“I just have to not get too high when good things happen and not get too low when you have to keep moving on,’’ Kerr said.’’ I just have to keep doing that. It’s going to happen again, it’s just a matter of when.’’
Second-ranked Stacy Lewis, coming off her tour-leading fourth victory of the season last Sunday in Japan, was seven-under along with Ryu So-yeon and Kung. Lewis and Ryu shot 70, while Kung had a 71.
Lewis has a 58-point lead over Park with two events left in the player of the year points race, putting her in position to become the first American to win the award since Beth Daniel in 1994.
“I mean, after last week, I kind of looked at it, and then, I mean, it’s really almost impossible to catch Stacy,’’ Park said. “I play with Stacy the last two days and she was playing really great. I think it’s almost impossible for the Player of the Year. I’ll just give my best and just see what happens. I mean, Stacy’s playing great, too so, I think it’s not going to be easy.’’
Michelle Wie, tied for the first-round lead with Stanford and Kung after a 66, had a 75 to drop into a tie for 12th at three under. Wie won the 2010 tournament.
Top-ranked Tseng was also on three-under after a 71. She had plenty of ups and downs during her second round, making five birdies, but also a double-bogey and two bogeys.