Markham, Ont. (Golf Canada) – After starting the day with a 7-shot lead, Team USA (137-141—278) continued their impressive play Monday and now hold a commanding 12-shot lead through 36 holes at the inaugural World Junior Girls Golf Championship at Angus Glen Golf Club (South Course) in Markham, Ont.
Mika Liu (70-69—139) and teammate Angel Yin (73-72—145) counted a second-round team score of 3-under 141 to lead the host Canadian team by 12 shots heading into Tuesday’s third round.
“I can’t be more proud of these kids; I’m really just their No. 1 fan,” said non-playing captain Courtney Myhrum on the team’s score of 10-under 278 through 36 holes. “To have a complete game and the age of 15 or 16 is amazing. Mika, Megan and Angel they just grind, absolutely grind. They just don’t get flustered. What I tell them is to relax, have fun, enjoy the moment and take one shot at a time. I’m just there to encourage them all the way around.”
Liu, 15, led the way for Team USA shooting 3-under 69 in a round that included two bogies, three birdies and a impressive eagle on the 380 yard, par-4, 10th hole at Angus Glen (South Course), holing out from 177 yards with a 5-hybrid.
“That eagle was amazing,” said Liu, currently the no. 48 ranked player on the World Amateur Golf Ranking. “I had 177 yards from the rough and on a downhill lie. My first plan was to get in on the green. I was between a 5-hyrid and a 5-wood and I decided to go with the hybrid to play it safe. I hit my shot and all of a sudden the Australian coach just started standing up and clapping and clapping. I was like, what’s going on? I got up there and my ball was in the hole. I just took it and kissed it. I was very happy.”
Yin (15) carded three birdies over three bogies for a second-round, even-par 72 as the second USA score to count while 16-year old teammate Megan Khang (67-73—140), the opening-round individual leader, shot a non-counting 1-over 73 to round out the USA team scores.
Team Canada (144-146—290), led by the world’s no. 1 ranked amateur Brooke Henderson (17) of Smiths Falls, Ont. shot a team-total 2-over 146 and is alone in second at 2-over through 36 holes, 12 shots off the lead.
Henderson (70-73—143) and teammate Grace St. Germain (16) of Ottawa (74-73—147) counted matching scores of 1-over 73 for Canada on Monday with Naomi Ko (17) of Victoria (77-79—156) rounding out the Canadian scores at the midway point of the championship.
Team Denmark (149-143—292), who began the day in 7th, counted an impressive second-round, 5-under 67 by 15-year old Line Hansen (76-67—143) to jump into a share of third with Italy (147-145—292) at 4-over with Spain (147-146—293) rounding out the top-five at 5-over.
Canada’s second team in the competition comprised of Jaclyn Lee (17) of Calgary (72-77—149), Selena Costabile (16) of Thornhill, Ont. (78-74—152) and Alisha Lau (14) of Richmond, B.C. (83-80—163) shot a team-total, 7-over 151 (150-151—301) are in 13th position at 13-over through 36 holes.
With her second-round 69, Liu (70-69—139) takes over the top spot on the individual leaderboard at 5-under, one shot better than her USA teammate Megan Khang (67-73—140). Canada’s Brooke Henderson (70-73—143) is tied for third with Denmark’s Line Hansen (76-67—143) at 1-under while Ireland’s Olivia Mehaffey (77-67—144) and Finland’s Anna Backman (71-73—144) are tied for fifth at even par 144.