For a third straight round at Stage II of the LPGA Qualifying Tournament, Prima Thammaraks (Bangkok, Thailand) signed a 4-under par 68 scorecard. However, the effort this afternoon on the Panther Course gave her the 54-hole outright lead by two strokes at 12-under overall.
On the bag for Thammaraks at Plantation Golf & Country Club is Wichanee Meechai, a 2016 Symetra Tour graduate and four-year LPGA Tour veteran with 69 career starts. Her presence is undoubtedly having a positive impact.
“She probably picked three clubs better than I did today, so it’s good to have her,” said Thammaraks, who recorded six birdies in round three. “I knew coming in that my game was too aggressive to play the courses. I was hitting it so good today, and Jan was like, ‘Yeah, just go for it.’ She was picking aggressive lines and had me go for it on some of the holes. It was a lot of fun out there.”
Meanwhile, 18-hole leader Olivia Cowan (Steinwenden, Germany) turned in another solid performance of 2-under par 70 to slide into solo second position. Sitting two shots back of Thammaraks with 18 holes to play, there’s only one thing on her mind.
“My goal is to win, and I want to try to keep that momentum going for Q-Series as well,” Cowan said. “I didn’t even know the scores out there really, so I guess that’s good I’m in the final pairing. I’m just going out tomorrow to hopefully play good golf and see what happens.”
Rounding out the last group off No. 1 of the Bobcat Course at 1:16 p.m. ET tomorrow is amateur Sierra Brooks (Orlando, Florida). Currently the low amateur by two strokes at 9-under overall, the University of Florida senior collected four birdies on the Panther Course today en route to a 1-under par 71.
“It would obviously mean a lot to advance, each step I’m taking as it comes,” said Brooks, a three-time tournament winner for the Gators. “It can be easy to get ahead of myself, but I’m just trying to stay in the moment. I’ve done a lot of good work in the summer and Gainesville, playing lot of competitions. I feel like my game has been ready and I’m building on it. I just want to keep improving.”
A total of 36 players concluded round three at 3-under par or better, while 42 competitors are 2-under par or better. A minimum of the top-30 players and ties will advance to LPGA Q-Series contested from Oct. 23 through Nov. 2 in Pinehurst, N.C. at Pinehurst Resort. Those at the next score, or scores, will also move on provided the total number of players in Q-Series does not exceed 108, which currently has 60 exempt and entered competitors.
NOTABLE QUOTESYan Liu (-9, T3) on the focus of her play for final round:
“Just keep up what I have been doing the past few days. I want to go for it, 100 percent all in. I just have to keep being patient to do my best. That’s what I’m best at, being patient.”
Esther Henseleit (-8, T5) on shooting 1-over par 73 this afternoon:
“I played not that good today, but I’m confident about my swing and my game. I’m just trying to focus on myself and make many birdies tomorrow. I like the [Bobcat] course we are playing tomorrow better, so I’m looking forward to it.”
Lakareber Abe (-8, T5) on competitiveness of Symetra Tour and how it prepared her:
“No matter where you are, I tried to take every round as you can learn something from it. Sometimes it is not always about winning, but what can you learn. Hopefully that all culminates to reaching your goals at some point. Trying to treat this like another tournament, go out there and do my thing. Hopefully play as well as I can and it all works out, but just working on hitting every shot the best I can.”
PLAYER NOTESPrima Thammaraks
- Thammaraks, 27, is from Bangkok, Thailand
- Three-time First Team Academic All-Big 12 selection for Iowa State University
- Earned All-Big 12 Team honors as freshman in 2011 highlighted by two runner-up finishes
- Named the 2014 Big 12 Scholar-Athlete of the Year for the sport of women’s golf as a senior
- Finished T26 at the Final Stage of 2015 LPGA Qualifying Tournament to earn LPGA Tour membership for the 2016 season
- Australian Ladies Professional Golf (ALPG) member where she captured her first professional victory at the 2017 RACV Gold Coast Challenge
- Total of 48 starts on the Symetra Tour since rookie year 2015 with a career-best result of T3 on two occasions (2016 Gosling’s Dark ’n Stormy Classic, 2018 Symetra Classic)