ST. ANDREWS, Scotland (AP) — If Michelle Wie’s scores matched the disappointing summer temperatures that have depressed the Brits for weeks, she’d still be playing in the Women’s British Open.
Wie would like to have been in the high 60s. But she hasn’t managed that for more than a year.
On Friday, she was up in the 80s again and that meant missing the cut.
Wie has been getting used to scores in the high 70s and low 80s for better part of a year. Some were in her sporadic moves to play on the men’s PGA Tour. Others have been since she injured her left wrist early in the year and she’s had one tournament disaster after another.
Of the four LPGA majors, she missed the Kraft Nabisco altogether, totaled her highest ever 72-hole mark of 21-over 309 in the LPGA Championship to finish last and pulled out of the U.S. Women’s Open halfway through her second round after scoring 82 in her first.
Arriving at the historic first women’s pro tournament to be played at St. Andrews, she showed signs of an improvement with an even par 73. On Friday, she was back at 80 when a triple-bogey seven and five more bogeys meant a 7-over score which missed the cut by two.
“It’s a disappointment because I didn’t play as well as I wanted to,” said Wie, who birdied the last hole and managed to put a positive spin on her latest high score.
“I do feel a lot stronger. I’m hitting a lot of shots that I’ve never really hit before so that’s a positive. I just need to take the positives and go on from there. I’m starting to feel really good about it. Obviously today was not my day, but I’ll do better.”
While Loreno Ochoa took a one-stroke halfway lead into her quest for a first major, Wie left St. Andrews with plenty more to think about.
“The whole year I’ve been struggling with the driver and I just never got the ball on the fairway,” said Wie, whose opening round had given her hope that her troubles were over.
“Today I felt that my driver was really solid. Obviously my irons weren’t good so I just have too keep it together. It’s like a puzzle. I’m just getting one bit at time.”
Ochoa saw an opportunity of a three-shot lead slip to one with a bogey at the last.
She went to the 18th green with a two-shot lead and faced a 25-foot putt for birdie. Her first putt, hit too strongly, curled four feet past the hole and then she missed that to wind up with a bogey 5.
She also missed a putt for eagle at 14 but her 6-under 140 puts her one ahead with Wendy Ward (70) and Catriona Matthew (68) tied for second.
“It was a good day. I’m pleased with my round,” the Mexican said. “I’m upset about the 3-putt on 18 but I’m just glad I still have the lead.
“I’m very pleased the way we worked the strategy with my caddie. I think we are in good shape and we understand pretty good the golf course and hopefully we can keep doing the same thing for a couple more days.”