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July 20. 2013 7:49PM

Kongkraphan leads Symetra Tour event


Lisanne Schmidt of Grantham and her father and caddy, Chris, pose for a photograph by tournament official Steve Bottomley during the Symetra Tour tournament at Beaver Meadow Golf Course in Concord on Friday. (DAVID LANE/UNION LEADER)

P.K. Kongkraphan's signature smile was beaming bright after the completion of her second-round as she fired her second consecutive 4-under 68 to take the lead at the Northeast Delta Dental International.

The third year Symetra Tour member notched five birdies and one bogey to find herself in the hunt to record her first victory on the Road to the LPGA.

The combination of cooler temperatures and crisp iron shots made for the perfect day for Kongkraphan who made her first birdie of the day at the par-5 second. She then recorded two additional birdies at the par-4 fifth and par-4 seventh.

"My irons are very good and the tee-shot was so well today," said Kongkraphan. "The weather is perfect, yesterday was a little hot. Everything, the weather, the shot, everything is perfect today."

The perfect day would continue for the Nakhon Ratchasima, Thailand native with a birdie at the par-4 14th, before her first hiccup of the day came with a bogey at the par-4 15th. Kongkraphan wasted little time recovering as she made her final birdie of the day at the par-3 17th.

Despite hitting 17 greens during the second round, Kongkraphan struggled with 30 putts. As Kongkraphan heads into tomorrow's final-round with a 1-stroke lead over Christine Song and Kim Kaufman, she admitted a lower score is possible if more putts find the hole

"I hit the ball so well today and solid," said Kongkraphan. "I hit my approaches on the par-4 to three feet two or three times today and I didn't make many putts. If I make many putts the score is going to be lower."

As Kongkraphan looks to improve on a career-best tied for fourth finish which came at this year's Four Winds Invitational, she admitted that focus will be just the component she needs to pull out the long-awaited victory.

"I just need to focus on the routine," said Kongkraphan. "Just keep my head down and keep going, play like first and second round."

While Kongkprahan has yet to make a trip to the winner's circle on the Symetra Tour, nipping on her heels heading into today are two of this year's nine tournament winners.

Kaufman, who won the Island Resort Championship, had a blimish free scorecard on Saturday as she fired a 3-under 69 to stand 7-under for the tournament.

"Today was great," said Kaufman. Actually, I think I played better today than yesterday, I just didn't make any bogeys. It was smooth and easy and I rolled-in a few and left a few out there. I'm pretty happy with the score of 69."

Also tied with Kaufman is 2013 Guardian Retirement Championship winner, Song. The Fullerton, Calif. native followed-up a first-round 4-under 68 with a second-round 3-under 69.

"I was hitting it decent until I got to the back-nine," said Song. "Then I was getting up-and-down so I think that's what saved me today."


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