Wie six back of Seo in Kia Classic Fujikawa finishes tied for 25th
Els works for two in row after taking Palmer lead
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Honolulu's Michelle Wie struggled to a 1-over-par 73 yesterday to fall six strokes off the lead after three rounds of the LPGA's Kia Classic at La Costa Resort & Spa in Carlsbad, Calif.
South Korea's Hee Kyung Seo was at 10-under 206 after a 69 in yesterday's third round. Taiwan's Candie Kung shot 69 and was alone in second five shots back. Wie is tied for third at 212 with China's Shanshan Feng, who shot a 68. Eight golfers are at 213.
Wie started the round two strokes behind Seo.
The Punahou alum and current Stanford student, had a chance to get closer to Seo, but struggled on the front nine.
"It was an interesting day out there," said Wie, who had two bogeys on the front nine. "The front nine was a bit tough for me. I was a bit unlucky in situations and I think I only hit one or two greens on the front nine."
Wie had both her bogeys on the front nine (Nos. 4 and 7, both par-4s) to make the turn at 2 over. She got her only birdie on the par-5 No. 11.
"I felt like every hole was into the wind; it felt like a conspiracy," Wie added jokingly. "I'm definitely going to try to go as low as I can (Sunday), hopefully no bogeys, just keep making birdies and keep truckin'. Hopefully something will happen."
Seo, a South Korean who is not a member of the LPGA Tour, received one of the three sponsor's exemptions to get into the tournament. She is playing in her sixth LPGA tournament, and has won 11 times on the KLPGA Tour.
She said she would look back at her victories to help settle final-round jitters.
"In final rounds of every championship I have been a little bit nervous," Seo said. "I know what I have to do to win. I think I will enjoy it.
"Five shots is a big lead, but there are lots of great players. I want to just play my game and not think about other things."
Kung has won four times on the LPGA Tour and believes it is possible to catch Seo and win the first full-field tour event in Southern California since 2005.
"If you get lucky out there," Kung said of her chances to win. "If you get the bounce that you need, the bounce in the hole, then you can catch her for sure."