There was no benefit of playing in the morning half of Saturday’s second round of the Symetra Tour’s Garden City Charity Classic at Buffalo Dunes Golf Course.
But don’t tell that to rookie Katelyn Dambaugh (No. Charleston, SC), who blistered the windswept course with a brilliant 4-under-par 68 to finish the day at 5-under 139, and holding a one-shot lead heading into Sunday’s final round.
First-round co-leaders Carlie Yadloczky (Casselberry, FL) and Anne-Catherine Tanguay (Quebec, Canada), both of whom shot 5-under-par 67s late Friday, found the blustery conditions a bit tougher on Saturday.
Yadloczky shot a 4-over-par 76 while Tanguay played a steady 1-over 73 to finish their 36-hole totals at 143 and 140. Dambaugh and Tanguay will be two of the three players in the final group Sunday.
Tee times begin at 8 a.m. with the final groups scheduled to go off around 10 a.m.
Dambaugh and Tanguay both will be seeking their first wins on the Tour and in pursuit of the $22,500 winner’s check.
Dambaugh used a strong short game en route to one of the best rounds of her season, making six birdies while suffering only two bogeys.
“My short game was really good, considering how windy it was out there,” Dambaugh said. “I converted 8 of 10 missed greens. I was able to take advantage of the par-5s (2 birdies, 2 pars).”
With her start on No. 10, Dambaugh closed her round with an impressive birdie-2 at the par-3 8th, where she hit a soft 8-iron from 181 yards to within eight feet and drained the putt.
“I was just trying to play smart, and land it short and let it roll up,” Dambaugh said of her tee shot there. “Yesterday (Friday), I hit long and today you just had to keep it under the hole.”
Dambaugh said her 68 was one of the best rounds of her first season as a professional.
“I’ve been pretty close, but anything can happen,” she said. “I’m happy where I’m at, and we’ll just come back tomorrow and try to play the same way. In these conditions, you just try to stay focused and minimize errors.”
For Tanguay, she’s been in this position before, and she is looking forward to Sunday, and an opportunity to close out a strong weekend.
Two years ago, when she was a rookie, Tanguay tied for fourth in the Classic for her first top 10 finish. This year, she has had five top 10 finishes, including a tie for second, two thirds and a tie for fourth. Lately, though, she had not been as sharp until her 67 on Friday had her brimming with confidence.
“Today was difficult how to quantify what the wind was doing,” she said after her two-bogey, one-birdie round. “Birdies were harder to get. Par is always good. I gave myself chances. Honestly, it was difficult to get it close.”
Tanguay said she doesn’t pay attention to leaderboards, so she was just happy to know she’s in a good position heading into Sunday.
“Today, I was just staying focused and stay in the present,” she said. “I’ll carry it on tomorrow. I just want to give myself a chance to play well, have fun, and let the results take care of themselves. That’s the biggest thing.”
Four other players who began the second round at 4-under — Nicole Sakamoto (Honolulu, HI), Olivia Jordan-Higgins (Jersey, UK), Emily Childs (Alameda, CA) and Erynne Lee (Silverdale, WA) — all struggled with the high wind, blowing at a steady 25 mph and gusting to as much as 35 mph.
August Kim (71) and Stephanie Na (72), were both sharing third at 3-under 141. Another three were at 2-under 142 — Elin Arvidsson (72), Emma Talley (73) and Sophia Popov (74).
After 31 players had broken par in Friday’s first round, there were only 14 players at par 144 or better heading into the final day. The wind had won the day.
The projected cut for the low 60 scores and ties was at 5-over-par 149.