Lincicome falls 3 back at Kraft

RANCHO MIRAGE, Calif. — Seminole's Brittany Lincicome didn't have the stellar round Friday she had on Day 1 of the Kraft Nabisco Championship, but she's still in the hunt.

Lincicome had four birdies and four bogeys en route to shooting par 72 after playing bogey-free Thursday in the LPGA's first major of the year.

Her 6-under 138 put her among a trio of golfers three shots behind second-round leader Stacy Lewis.

"(Thursday) just felt more free," said Lincicome who opened with 6-under 66 and a share of the first-round lead with Lewis. "It felt like I knew where the ball was going. I could step up and hit it, and (Friday) I felt like I was guiding it a little bit."

In the three years since Lewis lost a third-round lead at the U.S. Women's Open in her first pro tournament, she traveled the globe, opened her mind and thoroughly revamped her game.

A few bad iron shots and a little desert heat just aren't such challenges any more.

Lewis persevered through more triple-digit temperatures to shoot 3-under 69, opening her lead over world No. 1 Yani Tseng, Jane Park and Lincicome.

Michelle Wie shot 67, matching the day's best round and closing within six shots in contention for her first major title.

The leaders all managed to thrive on dry, speedy greens during a second windless day at Mission Hills, with the temperature topping 100 by midday.

Lewis pulled ahead at 9 under after several big putts during the second round.

"My round was all over the place," Lewis said. "But I made some really good up-and-downs and stayed really patient on the back nine."

Big things were expected from Lewis after she burst onto the tour with a third-place finish at Interlachen in 2008, nearly becoming the first player to win a major in her pro debut.

Though she's now a solid pro, finishing 21st on last season's money list, she hasn't won.

PGA: Rookie Chris Kirk shot 3-under 69 for a one-shot lead over defending champ Anthony Kim and 2008 winner Johnson Wagner after two rounds at Redstone. Kirk finished at 9-under 135 and played his last few holes just as the wind picked up in the afternoon and made scoring more difficult. Padraig Harrington, first-round leader Jimmy Walker and Josh Teater were two shots back.

CHAMPIONS: Jeff Sluman tied a course record at 6-under 66 to take a one-shot lead over Tom Lehman at the Mississippi Gulf Resort Classic in Saucier, Miss.

Lincicome falls 3 back at Kraft 04/01/11 [Last modified: Saturday, April 2, 2011 12:12am]

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