WILMINGTON, N.C. – For the second straight day at the Landfall Tradition, the fourth-ranked Duke women’s golf team had a stellar round going before struggling to finish on the back nine. The Blue Devils did though make up two strokes and remain second at the 6,204-yard, par 72 Country Club of Landfall in Wilmington, N.C.
Alabama remains the in the lead with a 36-hole total of 575, while Duke (583), Clemson (598), South Carolina (599), Arizona (606), Wake Forest (609), Virginia (614), Oklahoma State (614), Michigan State (617) and Ohio State (617) round out the top 10.
The Blue Devils made up seven strokes from their first round score of 295 as Duke carded an even-par, 288, on Saturday. After notching 10 birdies on day one, the Blue Devils rolled in 17 in the second round. Duke was eight-over-par over the final six holes on Saturday. Over the first 36 holes, Duke is 16-over-par over the final six holes at the Country Club of Landfall.
Duke freshman Yu Liu posted a second round three-under-par, 69, to move into a tie for second place overall with a 143. She trails Alabama’s Stephanie Meadow by two strokes heading into the final round.
Liu, who is from Beijing, China, carded a career-high six birdies on the day, including back-to-back birdies on holes 17 and 18 to finish with her best score since arriving in Durham.
Senior Laetitia Beck had a very low round going on the front nine, after suffering a bogey on No. 2 to drop to one-over-par. Beck, a native of Caesarea, Israel, birdied No. 4, No. 5, No. 6 and No. 8 to move to three-under-par. She suffered bogeys on No. 13, No. 15 and a triple-bogey on No. 16 to close with a 74. She is tied for ninth overall with a 147. Beck hit 14 greens, 12 fairways and had 31 putts on the day.
After posting an even-par round on Friday, sophomore Celine Boutier carded a three-over-par, 75, on Saturday and is tied for ninth overall with a 147.
Making her collegiate debut this weekend is freshman Esther Lee, who posted the first under-par round of her career as she finished with a one-under-par, 71. She is tied 16th overall with a 150 heading into the final round. Lee, who is out of Los Alamitos, Calif., hit all 14 fairways, 12 greens and had 29 putts in her round. She opened with a bogey on the second hole but then registered birdies on No. 6 and No. 8 to move to one-under-par. Lee had her third birdie of the day on the 12th before finishing with five pars and a bogey on the 16th.
Fellow freshman Sandy Choi carded a two-over-par, 74, in the second round and she is tied 16th as well. A native of San Diego, Calif., Choi had four bogeys and two birdies for her day as she hit 12 fairways, 10 greens and had 30 putts.
Playing as an individual, senior Alejandra Cangrejo fired a 76 and is tied 45th overall after 36 holes. A product of Bogota, Colombia, Cangrejo hit 12 fairways, 10 greens and had 32 putts.
Duke will tee off on Sunday beginning at 8:45 a.m., with a shotgun start along with Alabama and Clemson.