Lydia Ko off the pace in latest LPGA Tour event

PETER LAMPP
Last updated 13:45 10/08/2014
OFF THE PACE: Lydia Ko watches her tee shot on the second hole during the third round of the Meijer LPGA Classic.
Getty Images
OFF THE PACE: Lydia Ko watches her tee shot on the second hole during the third round of the Meijer LPGA Classic.

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Even for a cool kid like Lydia Ko, eight shots were probably too many to make up with a round remaining at Michigan.

After three rounds of the Meijer LPGA Classic in Grand Rapids, she had dropped to five under par while leader, South Korean,  Inbee Park, was at 13 under.

Ko found herself tied for 12th after rounds of 69, 68, 71.

The wind got up for the first time at the Blythefield Country Club today and 17-year-old Ko posted three bogeys matched by three birdies.

She did hit 11 of the 18 greens in regulation, an improvement on her second round.

None of which will cause Ko too much distress because this event is a hit-out before another of the five women's majors, the LPGA Championship at Pittsford, New York, won last year by Park.

However, Ko's  drop from fifth place came about because the 11 players ahead of her all shot in the 60s today.

First-round leader Sandra Gal (Germany) had a bigger drop to tie for 14th after the third round.

Waikato pro Steve Alker had a topsy-turvy third round to be in a nine-way tie for 16th in the Web.com Tour's Price Cutter Charity Championship at Springfield, Missouri.

But at 13 under he was only three shots behind the joint leaders, Dane Sebastian Cappelen, American Martin Piller and Aussie Cameron Percy.

Alker carded six bogeys, five birdies and an eagle in a day affected by weather.

New Zealand pros, Tim Wilkinson and Danny Lee, had the week off.

Auckland 21-year-old James Beale has become the third Kiwi golfer to win the Canadian men's amateur and the first in 13 years.

He followed legendary amateur Stuart Jones in 1967 and Gareth Paddison who won the Canadian Amateur title in 2001.

Beale won after the third playoff hole at the Elmhurst Golf and Country Club by rolling in a long birdie putt.

He finished 72 holes tied atop the leaderboard alongside Canada's Taylor Pendrith and American Jonathan Garrick at six-under par.  The trio battled it out over three holes before Beale's 22-foot birdie putt on the par-4 18th hole.

He earns an exemption into next week's US Amateur Championship and also the 2015 Canadian Open on the PGA Tour.

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