Del Rosario, Arevalo get into the mix with 71s LPGA and Symetra Tour qualifier

Del Rosario, Arevalo get into the mix with 71s LPGA and Symetra Tour qualifier

Del Rosario, Arevalo get into the mix with 71s LPGA and Symetra Tour qualifier

MANILA, Philippines – Pauline del Rosario blew some chances to go lower than 71 at the Panther course Thursday (Friday, Manila time) but remained upbeat of a better showing at Bobcat when the field switches courses in Day 2 of the LPGA and Symetra Tour Qualifying Tournament Stage II at the Plantation Golf and Country Club in Venice, Florida.

Abby Arevalo matched that one-under card, also at Panther, in one of the late flights as the Filipina duo shared 32nd place with 15 others in an inspiring start to a tournament that will either keep or break their bids for cracks at the LPGA cards next year.

Del Rosario failed to make the most of her early start as she struggled on the tight fairways, finishing with just two birdies against a bogey for a 35-36 card she spiked with a two-putt birdie on the par-5 No. 9, her closing hole at the start of the 72-hole tournament staking the Top 45 plus ties berths in the Q-Series among 179 hopefuls from 37 countries.

Arevalo, on the other hand, bucked challenging conditions in the afternoon wave, fighting back from a one-over card with two birdies at the back to save a 37-34.

The ICTSI-backed aces, however, stood four strokes off Pauline Roussin-Bouchard, who put in a solid 67 to wrest a one-stroke lead over eight others.

“Overall, I think I still left many (chances) out there. I know I can still improve,” said del Rosario, who birdied the first par-5 hole on No. 13 from 21 feet but yielded the stroke with a missed green miscue on No. 17.

The No. 2 in the Women’s All Pro Tour, however, muffed a couple of birdie opportunities at the front but produced two superb shots on the ninth to finish with a three-foot birdie putt.

The duo, however, will have to deal with a different kind of challenge at the Bobcat course as the tournament changes courses with del Rosario and Arevalo looking to dish out a pair of lower rounds in an attempt to improve their rankings heading to the 36 holes.

“Panther isn’t too long but for me but it’s narrow,” said del Rosario. “Bobcat is longer but with wider fairways. I’m actually more comfortable playing at Bobcat during practice so I hope it will show in my score tomorrow.”

Arevalo, who gained entry here with a tied for 33rd finish in Stage I, gets to tee off early Friday, drawing a 9:06 a.m. start on No. 10 with Lauren Cox fo the US, who also opened with a 71, and South African amateur Kaleigh Telfer, who showed up her pro rivals with a 70.

Del Rosario, on the other hand, resumes her campaign at 12:10 a.m. on the first hole with Nannette Hill of the US (72) and Canadian amateur Brigitte Thibault (74).

Roussin-Bouchard birdied four of the last six holes to finish with a bogey-free 67 as she grabbed a one-stroke lead over Spain’s Maria Parra, Milagros Chaves of Paraguay, Americans Kaley In, Gabby Lemieux and Katherine Smith, Swede Linn Grant and amateur Karen Fredgaard of Denmark.

Top 45 players and ties after 72 holes will advance to the Q-Series, a 144-hole tournament, to be led by those who had failed to keep their LPGA cards in 2020, with a cut after Week I. A minimum of the Top 45 and ties, based on their cumulative scores across the two-week competition, will earn the coveted LPGA cards for next year.

The Q-Series is set from November 29 to December 12 at the Robert Trent Jones Golf Trail in Alabama.

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