LPGA: Eyeing first major, Amy Yang grabs 2-shot lead at Women’s PGA

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Amy Yang of South Korea shot a one-under-par 71 to grab a two-shot lead Saturday after the third round of the Women’s PGA Championship.

Yang, 34, who has yet to win a major, followed both of her bogeys with birdies on the next hole at Sahalee Country Club in Sammamish, Wash.

“My mindset for tomorrow is just like today,” said Yang, who has finished in the top 10 at majors 21 times. “I did really well. Just follow my decision and be really disciplined about it.

“I’m just going to embrace the moment and not going to expect the result. Just see what’s going to happen.”

Miyu Yamashita of Japan (70) and Lauren Hartlage (69) are tied for second, one shot ahead of Sarah Schmelzel (74), who was tied with Yang atop the leaderboard after the second round.

“Yeah, I’m super excited,” Hartlage said. “Never been in this position before and this is something that I dreamed about growing up as a kid, so it’s really awesome to be in this position and just kind of see how it goes and learn from every day, every round.”

Yang is a two-time U.S. Open runner-up who hasn’t won since the 2023 Tour Championship, her fifth overall win on the LPGA Tour.

Americans Caroline Inglis, Lexi Thompson and Lilia Vu, South Korea’s Jin Young Ko and Japan’s Hinako Shibuno are tied for fifth, four shots off the lead.

Yang, who is ranked No. 25 in the world, moved one shot ahead of Schmelzel at the turn with a birdie putt at No. 9.

Yang hit another birdie at 11 and her lead grew to three shots when Schmelzel missed a nine-foot par putt at 12.

“Really didn’t putt as well as I wanted to,” Schmelzel said, “but happy that I hit it well enough on Saturday in a major, and hopefully just clean up some speed stuff on the greens before tomorrow and take it into tomorrow.”

On No. 16, Yang’s lead was cut to one when she missed a downhill seven-foot par putt but birdied the next hole to restore her two-shot lead. Yang had to settle for par on the final hole after missing a short birdie putt.

Yang had completed 30 straight bogey-free holes until No. 8 but maintained the lead.

“I mentioned that I’m hitting balls really well out there the last three rounds,” Yang said. “Yeah, but most important thing was how committed I was on each shot.

“Whenever or whatever I decide to hit, I try to not think about what’s going to happen because it’s very tight and playing tough out there.”

Pajaree Anannarukarn of Thailand sank the first hole-in-one at the event since 2018, acing the 153-yard par-3 13th hole. She previously aced a hole at another major, the 2020 Chevron Championship.

–Field Level Media

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