NEW YORK: Team Gustavsson have swept to an impressive victory in the team competition at the Aramco Team Series — New York on the Ladies European Tour.
Swedish skipper Johanna Gustavsson led a quartet at Trump Golf Links that included Jessica Karlsson, Karolin Lampert and New York college star Jennifer Rosenberg, who took advantage of perfect conditions to finish on 23-under-par.
The winners held off late challenges in the $500,000 team event from a host of international talent to mark first LET victories for Gustavsson and Karlsson.
“It’s a win and it’s a team win and it’s just great to celebrate with the others and have this kind of experience,” said Gustavsson. “The joy of winning is so much better when you share it as well. It’s just been great, and having Jennifer with us, she’s got a bright future, turning pro soon, and I think we’ll see her again.”
It was back-to-back wins for Lampert, who also was part the winning team at last year’s Aramco Team Series — New York at Glen Oaks Golf & Country Club.
Runners-up in the team competition was Team Hewson (-21) with Team Maguire (-19) and Team Babnik (-19) in third respectively.
In the second round of the individual competition, World No. 8, Lexi Thompson made the most decisive move, showing her class on Friday with a round of 65 to finish on eight-under-par — a slim one-shot lead heading into the final day on Saturday. Thompson’s round included five birdies and an eagle, with the American star’s putter red-hot in the New York sunshine.
Thompson said: “It was a great day out there. We couldn’t have asked for better weather compared to yesterday and it was obviously a little softer due to the rain. It’s a tough track and it can get windy — so you just have to take advantage of the easier holes.”
A victory would mark the 27-year American’s first professional win since the Shoprite LPGA Classic in 2019.
“All I can focus on is my game and my emotions, so I’ll just try and take that into tomorrow,” Thompson said. “I’m sure I have to come out and play my A-game. But all I can focus on is my game and my emotions.”
Just one behind is tournament headliner and World Number 4, Nelly Korda, who was another to stamp her authority on the Ferry Point Links. A round of 67 included four birdies and an eagle to finish on seven-under-par. Korda is aiming for back-to-back wins on the Aramco Team Series — a format she is becoming increasingly dominant at.
Chasing Thompson and Korda is Madelene Sagstrom (-5) and World No. 6, Brooke Henderson (-4.)
“I’m just going to try to stay aggressive and I need to get the putter a little bit hotter, so hopefully that will help me tomorrow,” said Sweden’s Sagstrom.
“A win would mean the world to me, and I’m going to go out there and give myself a good chance.”
Saturday’s final day of play will see only the lowest-scoring 60 players and ties from the opening two days return to the course to battle it out for a share of another $500,000, this time in individual earnings.