Bianca slides to joint 39th

PHOTOGRAPH COURTESY OF PGT/FB BACK-to-back bogeys pull down Bianca Pagdanganan in the standings after three rounds of the Carlisle Arizona Women’s Golf Classic in Mesa, Arizona.

Bianca Pagdanganan bogeyed the last two holes to settle for a two-over-par 74 in the third round of the Carlisle Arizona Women’s Golf Classic at Longbow Golf Club in Mesa, Arizona on Saturday.

The 25-year-old Filipina dropped to a share of 39th spot on 2-under 214, nine shots behind solo leader Gabriela Ruffels who carded a 67.

Pagdanganan, who shot 69 and 71 in the first two rounds, bogeyed 3 and birdied 9 to reach the turn on even par. She started the homeward trip with back-to-back bogeys but got back to even par after two consecutive birdies from 14.

However, she closed with back-to-back bogeys.

Clariss Guce, on the other hand, carded a 75 to slip to joint 51st on 1-over.

Ruffels separated herself from the rest of the field with a bogey-free round.

The Australian closed out her round with a birdie, which sparked a positive mindset heading into the final round.

“(Walking off 18 green) definitely felt better with a birdie. It wasn’t looking like a birdie when I saw my lie in the bunker after my 3-wood,” Ruffels said. “I’m super happy with my last 4 to 5 holes. I got off to a slow start and finished really well, so I’m happy leading into tomorrow.”

Ruffels is in her sophomore campaign on the Epson Tour and would secure her first professional victory with a win on Sunday. After finishing No. 15 on the 2022 Official Money List, missing her LPGA Tour card through the top 10 by five spots, walking away with the title in Mesa would put Ruffels in a good position to make a run for the 2023 Epson Tour top 10.

“I’ll probably try not to think about it, but I feel like you’re going to, definitely on the last couple of holes,” Ruffels said. “But it would mean everything. We’re all out here trying to do the same thing and get to the LPGA Tour, so a win is a really good step in that direction. It would mean a lot, but we’ll just take it one shot at a time.”

Tied for second, at -12, are second-round leaders Kathleen Scavo and Min A Yoon. The duo both shot -3 during the third round to keep their names near the top of the leaderboard. Scavo carded five birdies on the day but didn’t feel that her overall performance was where it was the past two days.

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