Kean takes three-shot lead in State Farm Rail Classic

Laurel Kean, who gave up competitive golf a year ago, shot her second consecutive 6-under-par 66 to take a three-shot lead after the second round of the State Farm Rail Classic in Springfield, Illinois.

Laurel Kean, who gave up competitive golf a year ago, shot her second consecutive 6-under-par 66 to take a three-shot lead after the second round of the State Farm Rail Classic in Springfield, Illinois.

First-round co-leader Lorie Kane, who shot a 69, and Dina Ammaccapane, who matched Kean's low round of 66, were tied for second after Saturday's round.

"I had a pretty good year in '97," said Kean, who quit playing professionally last year. "But '98 was a struggle, and I got to the point where I'd wake up and not be excited at all about going to the golf course."

After six events in 1999, the 37-year-old Kean was on her way back to home to Cleveland, not knowing what her future held.

"From last October to February, I probably didn't touch a golf club," she said. "Then I decided to try teaching."

Kean started working at a Cleveland-area golf range and gave lessons. But earlier this year, her competitive spirit was rekindled and Kean rejoined the tour.

Planning on a return to Qualifying School this fall, she entered a half-dozen LPGA events and played in about eight tournaments on the Futures Tour.

"I knew it would be a battle, but it was that way the last two years, so I knew what I was in for," Kean said.

Kean made the field for the Rail Classic after winning a two-hole playoff against Caroline Gowan earlier in the week. She capped that playoff with a birdie, and it would be an indicator of how things would go so far this weekend.

"The thing is that I've just stayed really patient, which for me is sometimes not part of my mentality," Kean said.

Four strokes back at 136 were defending tournament champ Mi Hyun Kim, who shot a 70; Australian Shani Waugh with a 67; and Kim Williams, whose 66 matched the career-low round she posted a week ago at the Oldsmobile Classic.

Leading scores after the second round of the $900,000 LPGA State Farm Rail Classic, played on the 6,403-yard, par-72 The Rail Golf Course.

Laurel Kean 66-66-132 Dina Ammaccapane 69-66-135 Lorie Kane 66-69-135 Kim Williams 70-66-136 Shani Waugh 69-67-136 Mi Hyun Kim 66-70-136 Mary Beth Zimmerman 71-66-137 Angie Ridgeway 69-68-137 Eva Dahllof 68-69-137 Kristi Albers 67-70-137 Pat Hurst 70-68-138 Julie Piers 69-69-138 Nancy Scranton 66-72-138 Pearl Sinn 72-67-139 Marilyn Lovander 71-68-139 Michelle McGann 70-69-139 Brandie Burton 70-69-139 Jean Zedlitz 69-70-139 Cristie Kerr 69-70-139 Vicki Goetze-Ackerman 69-70-139 Alicia Dibos 69-70-139 Cindy Figg-Currier 68-71-139 Karrie Webb 68-71-139 Susan Ginter 73-67-140 Marisa Baena 72-68-140 Wendy Doolan 71-69-140 Dorothy Delasin 71-69-140 Jill McGill 70-70-140 Melinda Daniels-Price 69-71-140 Wendy Ward 75-66-141 Kellee Booth 74-67-141 Caroline Blaylock 74-67-141 Nanci Bowen 72-69-141 Rachel Hetherington 72-69-141 Kristal Parker 71-70-141 Kate Golden 70-71-141

Selected Others

Se Ri Pak 71-71-142 Rosie Jones 76-67-143 Cindy McCurdy 73-70-143 Becky Iverson 71-72-143 Donna Andrews 74-70-144 Catrin Nilsmark 74-70-144

Failed to Qualify

Mhairi McKay 75-70-145 Tammie Green 76-70-146 Betsy King 75-71-146 Pat Bradley 76-71-147 Dawn Coe-Jones 70-77-147 Nancy Lopez 77-72-149 Lisa Hackney 79-71-150 Sherri Steinhauer 74-78-152

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