W. Golf

Stoelting Still Alive at Manulife Financial LPGA Classic; Former Moccasin Makes the Cut in Round Two

Jackie Stoelting sits at one-over par after two rounds in her first LPGA event.Jackie Stoelting sits at one-over par after two rounds in her first LPGA event.

WATERLOO, Ont. – Playing in her first LPGA event, former Moccasin Jackie Stoelting (Barenborg) made the cut after the second round of the Manulife Financial LPGA Classic. A 2008 graduate of Florida Southern, Stoelting earned a spot in the 133-player field after winning Big Break Florida, which aired this spring on Golf Channel. She is believed to be only the second women’s golfer from FSC to play in a tournament on the LPGA Tour, joining Jana Peterkova, who qualified for the U.S. Open in 2005 and 2007.

Stoelting put herself in position with an opening round score of one-under par 70 on Thursday. At that point she was tied for 34th place, with the top 70 golfers (including ties) making the cut. Her first round started with a bogey on the par-5 No. 1, but by the end of the day she had birdied four other holes, including the par-5 No. 18 at the finish. That not only put her stroke ahead of the cut line, but in good company relative to some of the top golfers in the world. Her 70 was just one shot behind Stacy Lewis and Inbee Park, who are #1 and #2 respectively in the most recent Rolex rankings, and one shot ahead of Lydia Ko, who is ranked #3. Michelle Wie and Hee Young Park were the first-round co-leaders with a 65.

On Friday, Stoelting started on the back nine and came up with two birdies back-to-back on 14 and 15. A double-bogey on 17 and a bogey on No. 1 put her standing in jeopardy, but she rebounded but she played even par the rest of the way to finish with a two-over par 73 in the round. She went to the clubhouse tied for 70th place in the tournament at +1 (143), but none of the other golfers behind her who were still on the course could move ahead of her. Three of those golfers were at +2 with one hole to play, needing an eagle to bump Stoelting and a handful of others out of contention. One of them, Julia Boland from Australia, got a birdie, but it still left her one stroke behind Stoelting.

Among the golfers who just missed the cut was former Nova Southeastern All-American Sandra Changkija, who made her LPGA debut in 2012. She had scores of 72 in each round. Two years ago, Changkija was the first-round leader in the Manulife Financial LPGA Classic after shooting a 63.

Sitting at the top of the leaderboard with two rounds remaining are Shanshan Feng from China, and defending champion Hee Young Park from South Korea. Feng has scores of 66 and 65, while Park had a 65 on Thursday and a 66 on Friday, putting them at -11 for the tournament. They moved ahead of the United States’ Wie, who had a 67 on Friday and is now in third place at -10.

Round three gets underway on Saturday at 7 a.m., and Sunday also has a scheduled start time of 8 a.m. Golf Channel will provide live coverage from 3-5 p.m. each day, and live scoring is available at LPGA.com.

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