Perfect timing for leader Fassi in LPGA

Maria Fassi couldn't have picked a better time to put it together, firing a LPGA career-best 62 to take a two-shot lead at the Pelican Women's Championship.

Fassi powered her way across the rain-softened Pelican Golf Club and improved her putting stroke on Friday.

It was perfect timing as this is the final tournament before the leading 60 players qualify for the CME Group Tour Championship with its $US7 million (A10.5 million) purse.

Fassi, the 24-year-old from Mexico, is at No.72.

"I think every single one of us out here wants to finish the year at CME," Fassi said. "For me, it was a very tough season at the beginning and kind of got back on my feet towards middle, end of the season.

"So now that I have a chance, and especially after today's round, it's just keep doing what I've been doing today."

Fassi felt confident by going back to her "claw" putting grip. Her power was even a bigger advantage on soft fairways with little roll.

Lexi Thompson, Carlota Ciganda and Hyo-Joo Kim were among those at 66. Thompson ended a streak of more than three years without a victory at the Saudi-funded Aramco Team Series in New York last month.

The Pelican Women's Championship was washed out Thursday because of Tropical Storm Nicole, and was reduced to 54 holes.

Fassi decided to replace her 5-wood with a hybrid, and after a big drive on the par-5 14th, the perfect club was a 5-wood.

"I was like, 'OK, this is interesting,'" Fassi said.

She figured her hybrid would leave her a few yards short of the green, but there was just enough breeze behind her and just enough power in her swing that it got onto the green and rolled out to eight feet, setting up an eagle putt.

"Honestly, I couldn't have left myself a better putt for eagle, and it was good to just finish it with a good putt," Fassi said.

Australian Hannah Green made a 3-under 67 to be tied 18th.

The 2019 Women's PGA Championship winner was even par aftre the first nine before going on a roll making birdies on Nos.4-7.

But a bogey on the par-four eighth halted her progress and pegged her back in the field.

Kiwi Lydia Ko, who can clinch the LPGA player-of-the-year title, made a 2-under 68 and is tied 23rd.

World No.5 Minjee Lee, who was also in the running for the esteemed accolade, is not competing.