Katie Futcher and Jenny Shin shot 5-under 67s in the HSBC Women’s Champions on Friday to join first-round leader Angela Stanford at the top of the leaderboard.
Futcher and Shin both had six birdies and one bogey to reach 8-under 136 and tie Stanford, who had a 70, on a day temperatures reached the low 90s.
”My putting has been great the last two days so I’m happy to be where I’m at,” said Shin, who bogeyed the 13th.
The second-year LPGA player placed seventh at the season-opening Australian Open and is coming off a tie for ninth in Thailand in Sunday.
”I feel a little bit more confident with my golf game,” the South Korean said. ”I think Australia helped me a lot. I feel like I know what I’m doing out on the course now.
Futcher’s bogey, her first of the tournament, came on the 17th.
”I’m very, very satisfied,” the American said. ”Went out, made a great putt on No. 1 today for par, and that kind of really just got me settled and I was able after that to hit it pretty close and make a couple of putts.”
Stanford started the day with a two-shot lead, but admitted feeling fatigued after her opening 66.
”When I started today, I knew that I didn’t quite have that much energy, and so at least I’m starting to recognize it a little earlier in the round,” she said. ”I felt more tired this morning and the heat didn’t help right off the bat.”
South Korea’s Hee Young Park (68), compatriot Na Yeon Choi (71) and Japan’s Ai Miyazato (70) were tied three shots back at 5-under at Tanah Merah Country Club.
World No. 1 Yani Tseng struggled to a 72, but said her sore elbow wasn’t to blame.
”I feel I hit the ball pretty good, but my score was terrible and I just – I don’t know why,” she said. ”I didn’t make putts and I didn’t have much birdie chances actually.”
Tseng had two birdies and two bogeys and is tied for 20th at 1 under.
Michelle Wie shot an 81 after a 79 Thursday and was 24 shots behind at 16 over.
The 63-player field in the $1.4 million tournament includes 18 of the top 20 in world rankings.