Portland, OR (SportsNetwork.com) - Defending champion Suzann Pettersen fired a 5-under 67 on Saturday and moved into a share of the lead after three rounds of the Portland Classic.
Pettersen ended 54 holes at 11-under-par 205. She was joined there by Carlota Ciganda and 2009 winner Mi Jung Hur, who both shot 70 in round three.
So Yeon Ryu and Xi Yu Lin also carded 70s on Saturday at Columbia Edgewater Country Club and they are tied for fourth at minus-10. They were joined there by first- and second-round leader I.K. Kim, who struggled to a 2-over 74.
Mariajo Uribe posted a 6-under 66. She jumped into a share of seventh place at 9-under 207. Uribe stands alongside Laura Diaz (72), Eun-Hee Ji (67), Austin Ernst (69) and Line Vedel (69).
Pettersen, who also won this event in 2011, was six strokes off the lead at the start of the day. After four straight pars to open her round, she made eagle on the par-5 fifth.
The Norwegian star tripped to a bogey on the sixth, but erased that mistake with a birdie on the par-5 seventh.
Pettersen posted four pars in a row from the eighth. She birdied the 12th to get to 9-under. Pettersen converted back-to-back birdie chances from the 16th. She parred the last two holes for her share of the lead.
"My game is getting better and better. Today, I had a lot of chances on the back nine, but I just couldn't quite drop the putts," Pettersen said. "Birdied 16, 17 and got a good par out of 18 after being in trouble. But it was a good solid round."
Ciganda stumbled to a bogey on the second, but recovered that lost stroke with a birdie on the fifth. She climbed to 11-under with birdies at eight and nine.
The 24-year-old Spaniard grabbed the lead at minus-12 when she birdied the 12th. After five straight pars, Ciganda faltered to a bogey at the last to slip back to 11-under.
"I'm really happy with my results because the conditions were not easy. It was a bit windy and the pins, I thought, were a bit tougher than yesterday. My putting was good and I made some really good saves," Ciganda stated.
Hur parred her first four holes, then ran off three consecutive birdies from the fifth to jump to 12-under. She was one behind Kim at that point as Kim had a bogey and two birdies through seven holes.
Kim dropped back to 12-under with a bogey on the 11th, but Hur bogeyed the next hole to slip one back. A two-shot swing at the 13th knocked Kim from the lead for good.
She tripped to a bogey there and another at 17 to end one back.
Hur birdied the 12th to move to 12-under, where she shared the lead with Ciganda. Hur stumbled to a bogey at No. 15 and parred her final three holes.
"I had a good round ... and my short game was really great. But around the green, hit a lot of chip shots because I missed a lot of greens. I think I hit only 10 greens today," Hur stated.
NOTES: Pettersen has won the last five times she had at least a piece of the lead entering the final round ... Pettersen has a chance to join Nancy Lopez as the only three-time winners of this event ... Ciganda and Hur have previously had the 54-hole lead once on the LPGA Tour. Ciganda finished second and Hur won this title ... Hur also had the lead entering the final round of the 2010 ShopRite Classic, but finished second there.
08/30 23:37:31 ET