The United States bounced back from a disappointing start on day one by winning its two matches against England, but still trails Sweden in Pool A in at the Hanwha Lifeplus International Crown at TPC Harding Park in San Francisco.
Top-ranked Nelly Korda and fourth-ranked Lilia Vu of Fountain Valley and UCLA finished off Alice Hewson and Liz Young of England when Vu sank a 15-foot birdie putt on the 17th hole to close out a 2-up victory, and seventh-ranked Lexi Thompson (pictured) and 14th-ranked Daniel Kang of Thousand Oaks and Pepperdine beat Bronte Law, who played at UCLA, and Jodi Ewart Shadoff of England when Thompson’s 10-foor birdie putt at No. 16 capped a 3-up win.
“We were 2-down through two holes, and honestly, we were just kind of attacking pins,” said Korda, the 2020 Olympic Gold Medalist in Japan. “It was kind of cold out there, and then we finally got it back to even.
“On the back nine, we kind of turned it up where we won three in a row, and then after then we lost one, but Lilia made a nice putt on No. 17 to secure or win. Overall, I think it was a lot of teamwork out there, and it wasn’t easy because we were 2-down through two.”
Said Thompson of her winning putt: “I had about, I guess, 10-12 feet and it was breaking quite a bit, so I played it about two and a half cups out, a little bit uphill, so I knew I could be a little aggressive with it. But I was just trying to give myself a birdie opportunity going into that pin. I thought that (Nelly and Lilia) had won in front of us, and I was just waiting when I was reading my putt. It was definitely a good feeling to have (that they won) before putting. But I still just was focusing on my read. I knew (Danielle) had par in the hole, so I could go for the birdie.”
The U.S. is 3-1 in Pool A, while Sweden went to 4-0 and advanced to the semifinals when Madeline Sagstrom and Maja Stark got past Ruoning Yin and of Xiyu Lin of China, 2 up, and Swedes Caroline Hedwall and Anna Nordqvist downed the Chinese pair of Yu Liu and Ruixin Liu, also by 2-0.
However, the Americans are close to advancing to the semifinals with a 3-1 record, while China is 1-3 and England is 0-4.
Thailand (4-0) and Australia (3-0-1) clinched spots in the semifinals along with Sweden.
Sixth-ranked Minjee Lee and Stephanie Kyriacou of Australia defeated Nasa Hataoka and Ayaka Furue of Japan, 2 up, while Aussies Hannah Green and Sahar Kemp tied their match with Hinako Shibuno and Yuka Saso.
Fifth-ranked Atthaya Thitikul and Patty Tavatanikit of Thailand, who played at UCLA, handled third-ranked Jin-Young Ko and Hoo-Joo Kim of South Korea, 3 up, while Thai sisters Ariya and Moriya Jutanugarn took down South Koreans In Gee Chun and Hye-Jin Choi, 2 up.
For complete results and pairings, visit https://www.lpga.com/tournaments/international-crown/leaderboard