Redman and a pair of rookies lead CVS

Michele Redman holed out for eagle from the

18th fairway Saturday en route to a four-under 68 and a share
of the third-

round lead at the CVS/pharmacy LPGA Challenge.

LPGA
Tour rookies Ilhee Lee (68) and
second-round co-leader Beatriz Recari

(70) joined Redman in first at 12-under 204. The trio is one
stroke ahead at

Blackhawk Country Club.

Gwladys Nocera, Friday’s other second-round leader, managed only
a one-under

71 on Saturday, but she is tied for fourth place with Wendy
Ward, who carded a

three-under 69. The pair finished at minus-11.

Karine Icher’s six-under 66 in round three vaulted her to sixth
at 10-under

206.

World No. 2 Cristie Kerr also had a 66 on Saturday and that
moved her into a

tie for seventh with Katherine Hull, who overtook Kerr last
week to win the

Navistar LPGA Classic. The duo is knotted at nine-under
207.

They are all chasing the veteran and the rookies, but it was the
veteran who

got into the clubhouse first.

Redman was cruising along with a fine round of four birdies and
no bogeys. She

was tied for the lead at 12-under par, but a double-bogey at
the 16th derailed

her round and dropped her from first.

That was until the 18th.

Redman holed her approach for eagle and got right back into a
tie for first at

12-under par.

“I just kind of knew I hit a pretty good shot,” acknowledged
Redman. “It was

exactly what I visualized and what I felt, and I mean,
fortunately, it went in

the cup.”

Redman is the only LPGA Tour winner among the leaders, but her
last victory

came in 2000. She’s in contention again, but the 45-year-old
admitted that her

time on tour is coming to an end.

“It just took me a couple months to kind of get back on track to
see where I

wanted to go and how much I wanted to play out here, and I
think once I

figured that out, I think that really helped me,” said
Redman, who admitted

she applied for the coaching job at the University of
Minnesota, but didn’t

get the job. “I knew I still wanted to compete. I don’t want
to play 20 to 25

weeks a year. I know that.”

Lee made the turn with three birdies and a bogey, but she got
into the lead

thanks to a downhill eagle putt at the par-five 11th. She
birdied the next par

five, the 15th, to get sole possession of first at 13-under
par.

Lee couldn’t hold on to the lead on her own. She bogeyed the
17th to fall into

the tie atop the leaderboard.

It’s been a rough rookie campaign for Lee. She made the cut in
her first event

back in March, but didn’t make another until the end of
August. In fact, Lee

didn’t break 70 all year until the first round on
Thursday.

“I started to wonder, can I really make it out here, can I
really survive on

this tour,” Lee said through an interpreter. “I challenged
myself three

tournaments ago, let’s give it all I got and see what I can
do and let’s

change my mind set and see what I can do.”

Recari seemed to be done in by a double-bogey at the fourth
hole, but she

mixed four birdies and a bogey over the remainder of her
round. Her birdies at

14 and 16, holes she’s birdied each round this week, got her
a share of first.

Libby Smith (66) and first-round leader Brittany Lincicome (71)
share ninth at

minus-eight.

NOTES: Redman’s other victory besides the 2000 Betsy King
Classic was the 1997

Big Apple Classic…It’s expected that if Kerr can come from
behind and win,

she’ll be the No. 1 player in the world on Monday.