EVIAN-LES-BAINS, France — South Korean players have a lock on the top of the leaderboard after two days at the Evian Championship, with Mi Hyang Lee holding a one-shot lead at 10-under-par 132 after shooting 67 on Friday, July 26.
Hot on her heels at 9 under are 2014 Evian champion Hyo Joo Kim (64), Sung Hyung Park (66) and Inbee Park (68). China's Shanshan Feng stands alone in fifth place after shooting 66 on the 6,527-yard course overlooking Lake Geneva.
Lee, a two-time LPGA winner whose best finish this season was second place at the ANA Inspiration in April, started strong with back-to-back birdies on Nos. 1 and 2 but stumbled with a double bogey 7 at No. 9. She strung together five straight pars before finishing birdie-birdie-eagle.
"So I try to think positive, but still feel was so bad because it was (a) par 5 and I think a lot of players have chance to make birdie over there. I make double. I mean, even not bogey. I mean, feel was so bad," said Lee regarding the double at 9.
"Just like trying keep thinking nine holes left and I have two more rounds left. I don't know. Just keep trying to calm and be nice and it works."
Kim's 64 tied Sweden's Caroline Hedwall for low round of the day. Kim's bogey-free round featured five birdies and an eagle at 18, while Hedwall posted eight birdies and one bogey on her round.
"Today I was a bit more aggressive," said Hedwall, who opened with a 72 and stands tied with five players for sixth place at 6 under. "Actually suits me to be able to hit my putts a bit harder. So I just started hitting a couple close and rolling from some putts. Yeah, it was nice."
Also tied for sixth are Americans Amy Olson, a former North Dakota State golfer from Oxbow, N.D., (66) and Jennifer Kupcho (70), Thailand's Pajaree Anannarukarn (68) and South Korea's Sei Young Kim (68) and Jin Young Ko (71).
First-round leader Paula Creamer dropped into a tie for 24th after shooting 76.
The Evian Championship, which is celebrating its 25th anniversary and seventh year as an LPGA major, is the fourth of five women's major championships.
Defending champion Angela Stanford missed the cut after shooting 76-74.
Other notables missing the projected 2-over cutline include reigning U.S. Open champion Jeongeun Lee6 of South Korea (72-73), 2017 Evian winner Anna Nordqvist (72-73), No. 3-ranked Lexi Thompson (77-72), 2015 champ Lydia Ko of Australia (78-73), and LPGA great Laura Davies of England (74-80), who won the event twice in 1995 and '96 when it was a Ladies European Tour event.