Ji grabs share of Kia Classic lead as Kerr collapses

Los Angeles (AFP) - South Korea's Ji Eun-hee fired five birdies in a five-under par 67 on Saturday to share the LPGA Kia Classic third-round lead with compatriot Kim In-kyung and American Lizette Salas.

The trio's 11-under total of 205 put them one stroke in front of a group of four players headed by American Cristie Kerr -- who started the day with a five-shot lead but carded a three-over par 75.

"The conditions were rough so I just tried to keep the ball on the fairway," Ji said. "It (course) is a challenge. I keep trying to change my swing. I am starting to feel more comfortable with my new swing."

Kerr was tied on 206 with Taiwan's Hsu Wei-Ling (68), Sweden's Caroline Hedwall (70) and fellow American Cindy LaCrosse (68).

A day after a sparkling 64, Kerr had three bogeys and a double-bogey six at the par-four 15th -- where she hooked her drive into the trees.

Kerr, 40, had just two birdies on the Aviara Golf Club course where she won in 2015.

"I just didn't have it," Kerr said Saturday. "I've got to go work on my game a little bit."

On a tightly bunched leaderboard, another four players were tied on 207.

Sweden's Anna Nordqvist joined that group with a six-under 66 that included seven birdies. She was level with Spain's Carlota Ciganda (69), South Korean Lee Jeong-eun (70) and American Kris Tamulis (67).

Another five players were tied on 208.