5-under for Reto as she storms up Lotte Championship leaderboard

Apr 16, 2021 | Featured, South Africans abroad

Paul Reto came storming through the field on Friday with a second-round five-under-par 67 lifting her into a share of 16th at the halfway mark of the LPGA Tour’s Lotte Championship in Hawaii.

The South African qualifier made six birdies and dropped just a single shot to move to eight-under for the tournament. That took her to eight shots off the sizzling pace which was set by Yuka Saso of the Philippines, who carded a second successive eight-under 64 to hold a two-stroke edge over former world number one, Lydia Ko of New Zealand. Ko was in hot form herself, with her early nine-under 63 featuring nine birdies and no bogeys.

Reto got things going early with a birdie on the first, and she made two more ahead of the turn. She picked up another stroke on the 12th, before making her only bogey of the day on the par-four 15th. She atoned for that error with successive birdies on 16 and 17, before closing out with a par on 18.

She hit just nine of 14 fairways in her round, and just 12 of 18 greens in regulation, but with just 26 putts, her short game bailed her out and put her very much in contention.

Saso’s superlative round featured six birdies in her opening nine, as well as a bogey on the par-four fifth. She kept things tidy as she came home with three birdies.

The other South African in the field, Ashleigh Buhai, had a rare missed cut after opening with a double-bogey seven at the first. She pulled it back to finish level-par for the round, but two-over for the tournament.

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