Angela Stanford maintained her three shot lead in the Canadian Women's Open Friday with a solid round of 70. Only one bogey today after having none yesterday. Two of her three closest Thursday pursuers - Cristie Kerr and Jee Young Lee - matched her Friday score as local favorite Lorie Kane (she's actually from Prince Edward Island - that's a Canadian province, you geography flunkies!) moved to within 4 shots of the lead.
So can Stanford hold on and get her first career win? You'd certainly rather be up by three entering the weekend instead of down by three. She led in Nashville by three shots going into Sunday, shot 73 and wound up tied for second. I read that she played her back nine Thursday constantly reminding herself not to play conservatively. It sounded to me like she was admitting what went wrong back in May. If she can keep an aggressive attitude for 36 more holes, she's got the ball-striking ability to do it. In my statistics evaluation post, I mentioned her problem area has been putting - if she comes up short this week, that will be Prime Suspect #1.
I still feel good about my pick to win this week. Kerr is playing well, which is more than I can say about my CYA picks. Natalie Gulbis is +2, 12 shots behind. Mi Hyun Kim is suffering through her second straight off-week, barely making the cut at +5. That'll stop me from picking her for a while!