Thompson still leads Navistar LPGA Classic
Prattville, AL (Sports Network) - Defending champion Lexi Thompson followed her 63 on Thursday with a 3-under 69 on Friday and is still atop the leaderboard after the second round of the Navistar LPGA Classic.
Thompson finished 36 holes at 12-under 132 and is one stroke clear at the Senator Course at the Robert Trent Jones Golf Trail.
Last year, Thompson, then 16, became the youngest winner in LPGA Tour history with her 5-shot romp. She no longer owns that LPGA record thanks to Lydia Ko at this year's Canadian Women's Open, but the teenager is prepared for more success.
"Playing at the highest level as a junior and amateur has helped me to play well at this point," said Thompson.
Mi Jung Hur and Mindy Kim both fired rounds of 7-under 65s on Friday and the pair is tied for second at 11-under 133.
Dori Carter (67), Hee Young Park (69) and Lizette Salas (69) share fourth at 10-under par.
Thompson started on the 10th tee Friday and birdied the 11th to get to 10- under par for the championship. She notched another birdie at the par-3 16th and was firmly in command.
After three straight pars to open her second nine, Thompson rolled in a 25- footer for birdie at the fourth. She made it two in a row with a 4-foot birdie putt at No. 5.
Thompson was 13-under and cruising, but trouble loomed at the par-3 seventh. She missed the green and couldn't get up and down to save her par.
Thompson parred her final two holes and it was enough to stay ahead even though her closest pursuers played well and inched up the leaderboard in the afternoon.
"I played pretty consistent, hit a few squirrely iron shots that I wasn't happy with, but overall I played consistent," said Thompson. "My putting has gotten a lot better. It's all about confidence really and just getting up to it and saying to yourself you're going to make the putt."
After her historic victory last year, Thompson has struggled a bit in 2012. She has two top fives than came earlier in the year and missed three cuts in a row before back-to-back top 20s the last two weeks.
Gerina Piller (67), Sydnee Michaels (68), Lorie Kane (68) and Angela Stanford (68) are tied for seventh place at 9-under 135.
World No. 1 Yani Tseng shot a 2-under 70 on Friday and is part of a large group tied for 40th at 3-under par.
NOTES: Thompson was the runner-up at this year's Mobile Bay LPGA Classic...The 36-hole cut fell at 1-under 143 and Michelle Wie missed the cut by a single stroke.
09/21 20:11:44 ET