MIZUNAMI, Gifu Pref. – Jeon Mi Jeong moved into contention for her second title in a row Saturday after a 4-under 68 put the South Korean in a five-way tie for the lead heading into the final round of the Golf 5 Ladies.
Jeon, who romped to a five-shot win at last week’s Yonex Ladies, made three birdies on the front nine and picked up another stroke on the 16th in a bogey-free round at Mizunami Country Club, joining Sakura Yokomine, Shinobu Moromizato, Miho Koga and Yui Kawahara on 8-under 136.
Kawahara also had a 68, current money rankings leader Moromizato and Koga both had 69s while Yokomine, who led the first round after Friday’s 65, carded a 71.
Yuko Saito shot a 69 and sat one shot off the pace in sixth, while a quintet featuring Chie Arimura (70) trailed another stroke back.
FUJIKAWAGUCHIKO , Yamanashi Pref. (Kyodo) Ryo Ishikawa held on to his overnight lead with a 3-under 68 in the third round of the Fujisankei Classic on Saturday.
The 17-year-old phenom moved to 11-under 202, two strokes ahead of Kenichi Kuboya, at Fujizakura Country Club.
Ishikawa, looking for his third win of the season and the fifth of his career, opened up a four-shot lead after a front-nine 32 that featured an eagle on the par-5 third hole.
“I don’t really care about the number of eagles I make (compared with that of birdies). But I know I can only have eagle chances on the par-5s, so I keep trying for two great shots to set up an eagle opportunity,” Ishikawa said.
On the back nine, he bogeyed Nos. 11, 13 and 14 but quickly offset them with three consecutive birdies from the 15th.
“With the season entering the final stages, I believe the more I put myself in title contention, the better experienced I will be,” Ishikawa said. “I’ll try to improve my score from early in the morning tomorrow.”
Kuboya, the 1997 Fujisankei Classic winner, shot a 69 to stay in second place.
Toshinori Muto was three shots further back in third after a 71.
Shingo Katayama dropped out of contention with a 75 that left him tied for 20th at even par.