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Annie Park rides birdie spree to 2-stroke lead at Dana Open

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Annie Park birdied seven of the last 10 holes Friday in the Dana Open for an 8-under 63 and a two-stroke lead over U.S. Women’s Open champion Allisen Corpuz, Linn Grant and Jaravee Boonchant.

Park closed her opening nine at Highland Meadows with a birdie on No. 18 and added birdies on the first four holes on the front nine. She also birdied Nos. 7 and 8, playing her final nine in 6-under 28 to reach 11-under 131.

“I just had some really good shots out there,” Park said. “Recovered well from bad shots. Overall, I played really well.”

The 28-year-old Park won the 2018 ShopRite LPGA Classic for her lone tour title. She won the 2013 NCAA title and led Southern California to the team championship.

“My goal this week was to just focus on the good shots,” Park said. “Just play lightly out there. Whether it’s a good shot or a bad shot, it’s still the same. Just a normal shot. So, my goal was to not value the bad shots as much and value the good shots more. And that’s what I’ve been trying to focus on this season.”

Corpuz, coming off her breakthrough victory Sunday in the U.S. Women’s Open at Pebble Beach, had a 66 for her second straight bogey-free round.

“I think, honestly, the fatigue has kind of helped with the nerves a bit,” Corpuz said. “Going out there, just focusing on doing the same thing. Try and hit good shots. Just one shot at a time.”

Grant and Boonchant, tied for the first-round lead at 64, each shot 69.

“My tee shot wasn’t as good as yesterday,” Boonchant said. “So, I put myself in a lot of rough. I only hit seven fairways today.”

Grant and Boonchant are winless on the tour.

“I’m excited,” Grant said. “I feel like my game is there, even though it didn’t really come through today. Just, I’m really just excited to go out and play full on and not hold back.”

Twelve-time tour winner Ariya Jutanugarn topped the group at 8 under after a 69. Jeongeun Lee (64) also was 8 under with Lindy Duncan (65), Gemma Dryburgh (66), Maria Fassi (67), Matilda Castren (68), Linnea Strom (68) and Emily Pedersen (69).

Defending champion Gaby Lopez (65), Lydia Ko (68) and Minjee Lee (68) were in the group at 7 under. Top-ranked Jin Young Ko was five under after a 68.

Rose Zhang, the former Stanford star who won at Liberty National in her first LPGA Tour event as a pro, followed an opening 66 with a 77 to miss the cut.

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