Malixi new leader after flawless 69
Fully adjusted to the conditions, Rianne Malixi on Thursday kept her foot on the gas to shoot a second straight three-under-par 69 that turned a five-shot overnight deficit into a two-shot lead heading into the final 18 holes of the Citrus Golf Trail Ladies Invitational in Sebring, Florida.
Draining three birdies in a flawless round, the 16-year-old Malixi will take a 216 aggregate into Friday as she goes for the mop-up job to her seventh win of the season highlighted by three victories on the professional ladies tour back home.
A victory here will also give Malixi a third title in the United States after triumphs in the American Junior Golf Association. This will also prime her up for two more events next month, counting the Annika Sorenstam Invitational where the finest amateurs on the planet will be teeing off in Florida.
“I believe consistency was a great factor to today’s (Thursday) round,” Malixi said after a 34-35 effort at Sun ‘N Lake Golf Club.
“Just hitting fairways and greens was the goal, and if I had missed any of those, I just scrambled back with a par,” added the ICTSI-backed ace.
Morocco’s Sofia Essakali had a 71 and Megan Meng of the US a 73 to be two back as two-round leader Vanessa Zhang of the US ballooned to a 78.