June 10, 2018: After a first round 71, Aditi Ashok was staring at the sharp edge of the knife. Back in action after a few weeks away from the tour, Aditi played attacking golf on Friday. Despite making four birdies, she had to settle for an even-par finish in the first round. Aditi began the second round with a bogey at the first hole and the threat of missing the cut hung thick in the air around the Stockton Seaview Hotel and Golf Club.
The best often show their character under duress. It was exactly what Aditi did on Saturday. Playing with enormous poise and determination, Aditi kept her sheet clean through the rest of the day, forcing her way into the final round on Sunday.
Aditi broke a string of six pars with a pair of birdies at the turn. She continued her good run, decorating the card with birdies at 15 and 18 to end the day on a high.
The Indian is coming off successive top ten finishes on the LPGA and another good round on Sunday should help Aditi register another good result in an increasingly promising second full season on the circuit.
Second-year LPGA player Mariah Stackhouse shot a career-low round of 6-under, 65 to post 134 (-8) through the 36 holes (also a career-low) at the ShopRite LPGA Classic. The 21-year-old only has one top-10 finish for her professional career but is keeping her sights sets on a bigger picture.
“I’m happy with where I am. Like I said, golf is what I want for my career. I don’t want it to be a quick thing, which is why I didn’t feel the need to rush or leave school early. Personally for myself,” said Stackhouse. “I want to be out here for a while and I don’t think there is any rush in that for me.”
Stackhouse, a three-time All American at Stanford, didn’t make it into the U.S. Women’s Open field last week so she decided to spend her time off free of her golf clubs visiting friends in California
“Honestly, six, seven days without your golf clubs you’re not going to lose anything that you’ve been gaining. With the summer stretch, a major being in between and a couple courses I really like before and after the KPMG, I just want to be well rested. I didn’t want to be like, I’ve seen too much of my golf bag, I’ve seen too much of my clubs.”
Stackhouse has yet to score a top-10 finish for 2018 but the Georgia native is humbly managing her expectations.
“I didn’t come out wanting necessarily to win tournaments and be in contention. I need for my game to be at a place where I’m actually having an opportunity to contend week in and week out. That’s my only focus.”
With inputs from the LPGA TOUR