Markovich moved up in hunt for crown

After struggling with an opening round 86, Stefi Markovich bounced back with a second day posting of 73. While the two-day total left her with a 15 over par score of 159 at the 2012 Royale Cup Canadian Women’s Amateur Championship, the Welland resident improved to 67th place from the 104 spot she held on Tuesday. In the Mid-Amateur division she is third.

Jennifer Kirby of Paris, ON, carded a 72 on Day 2 for a two-round total of 147 and sits 12th with a 147, three-over par score.

Meanwhile, Ariya Jutanugarn of Bangkok, Thailand continues to lead the field at the Lethbridge Country Club in Lethbridge, Alta.

Jutanugarn, 16, led by a single shot after the first round, but after a 5-under par 67 on the day, she now leads by three shots at 8-under par 136. With this score, Jutanugarn beats the course record of 69 at Lethbridge Country Club, as does SooBin Kim, 18, of Coquitlam, B.C., who also shot 5-under par 67 in the second round to put her into sixth position at 1-under par 143.

Despite scoring her first bogey of the competition at Hole No. 7 today, Jutanugarn, who is currently ranked at #2 in the World Amateur Golf Rankings, carded an additional six birdies to keep her in first position ahead of Team Canada’s Jisoo Keel, 16, of Coquitlam, B.C. Keel shot six birdies and three bogeys to sit at 3-under par 69 on the day, giving her a 5-under par 139 after the first two rounds.

Thanks to a 4-under par 68 on the day, Jutanugarn’s older sister Moriya, 17, sits in a tie for third position alongside Kimberly Kaufman, 20, of Clark, S.D. and Natalie Gleadall, 21, of Stratford, Ont. The trio is currently six shots behind the leader at 2-under par 142.

In all, 79 players will advance to the third round. After 36 holes, the field was reduced to the low 70 players and ties, including the minimum requirement of 10 players from the Mid-Amateur division (25+ years) and five from the Mid-Master division (40+ years).

In the Mid-Amateur division, defending champion Christina Proteau of Port Alberni, B.C. leads by 10 shots over Ivy Steinberg of Stouffville, Ont. at 4-over par 148, thanks to a 1-over par 73 on the day. Steinberg sits at 14-over par 158, and in addition to her second place position in the Mid-Amateur division, she is leading the Mid-Master division by a single shot.

The individual winner of the 2012 Royale Cup Canadian Women’s Amateur Championship will receive an exemption into the 2012 CN Canadian Women’s Open at the Vancouver Golf Club in Coquitlam, B.C. from August 20-26. In addition, the champion will receive an exemption into the 2012 USGA Women’s Amateur Championship and, if applicable, the U.S. Women’s Amateur Public Links, U.S. Girls’ Junior, U.S. Women’s Mid-Amateur and USGA Senior Women’s Amateur Championships.