Lexi Thompson posted a 5-under-par 67 on Saturday and took a one-stroke lead over I.K. Kim of South Korea heading into the final round of the Lorena Ochoa Invitational at soggy Guadalajara Country Club in Guadalajara, Mexico.
Thompson, the 18-year-old from Coral Springs, Fla., who claimed her second LPGA Tour victory last month in the Sime Darby LPGA Malaysia, backed up her second-round 64 with another strong round despite a 23-minute rain delay and has not made a bogey over her last 36 holes.
"Yea, well the rain definitely affected us somewhat, but I teed off a little bit later with the delay," said Thompson, whose other LPGA Tour victory came in the 2011 Navistar LPGA Classic. "I think just controlling my yardages out here is pretty big and playing consistently. My irons were a lot closer today, and I dropped a few longer putts.
"Yeah, it gives me confidence going into tomorrow, but I know there's a lot of great players right behind me, and I know I have to play well. I know I have to shoot another 4- or 5-under tomorrow. I'm just going to go out with the same attitude and just commit to every shot."
Kim, who has won three times on the LPGA Tour but not since this tournament in 2010, birdied the last two holes to close out a second consecutive 67.
Stacy Lewis was two strokes back in third after a 67, followed by So Yeon Ryu of South Korea, who was another stroke back following a 71.
Anna Nordqvist of Sweden and Pornanong Phatlum of Thailand, who were tied for the 36-hole lead with Ryu, recorded 72s to tie for fifth.
Suzann Pettersen of Norway, who can take the No. 1 spot in the Rolex Women's World Golf Rankings from Inbee Park of South Korea with a victory, was tied for seventh, five shots back, after a 70.
Park shot a 72 and also was tied for seventh.