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SYLVANIA, Ohio -- Laura Diaz almost chose to walk away from golf to spend more time a
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SYLVANIA, Ohio -- Laura Diaz almost chose to walk away from golf to spend more time at home with her family. Anthony Averett Jersey . Now shes making the decision to juggle both jobs seem like a shrewd move. "I love being a mom; its the greatest thing in the world," she said after following a 9-under 62 with a solid 69 on Friday to maintain a three-shot lead through 36 holes at the Marathon Classic. "Its hard for me when I have to choose. So I made a list. My family is first, and then golf comes second and we work everything out in between." Chasing her first win since 2002, Diaz is at 11-under 131, three shots ahead of Lee-Anne Pace and Lydia Ko. Diaz led by four shots over Pace and Austin Ernst after the first round. She was pleased her game was sturdy enough to hang on to the lead despite being in the heat of contention for the first time in several years. "It was just a challenge because I havent been in this position in a very long time," Diaz said. "For sure, I havent had cameras on me in a long time." So she took the opportunity to say hello to her kids -- 8-year-old son Cooper and 4-year-old daughter Lilly. "(The cameras) get in my face and I dont really know what to do," she said. "I said, Hi, kiddos. I love you. That kind of stuff." She made sure the cameras stuck around with her strong play down the stretch. After a nine-birdie, no-bogey effort in the first round, she showed signs of faltering early on Friday. She had her first bogey of the tournament on the sixth hole to fall back into a tie with Pace and Ko, but then regained her touch after getting par on the next six holes. Starting at the 13th, she birdied four of the next six, including the par-5 closing hole. Diaz was a rising star early in her career, winning twice in 2002 and playing on four Solheim Cup teams. After she married Kevin Diaz, she found that she liked being a wife and mother more than travelling the world playing golf. She hasnt been in the top 20 of a tournament since 2010. Before the season she was torn between coming out on tour and staying home so as not to miss any of the daily routine. In the end, she decided to keep playing. "(It was) knowing that I could manage being a mom and play. I think thats something Ive struggled with, for, well eight years," she said. "When I only had one (child) I think I got to a point where I was OK. But with two youve got twice as much to get done. Pace, a South African who is an alum of the University of Tulsa, is looking for a breakthrough win on American soil. After a 68, she couldnt contain herself. "Im very happy about (my) position," said Pace, who has won eight times on the Ladies European Tour. "I would like to be in contention on the weekend. Thats when the fun starts, right?" The 17-year-old Ko is bidding for a second LPGA Tour title as a pro to go with the two she won as an amateur. She shot a second consecutive 67, turning in 1 under and then posting three birdies on the inward nine. The key, she said, was to keep her emotions in check. "I try and be calm. You know, thats what you have to do," she said, sounding far older than a rookie. "Being overly happy or overly angry, thats not going to help me." Lurking another shot back at 135 are 2012 Marathon winner So Yeon Ryu and Rebecca Lee-Bentham, both of whom shot 67s. Ryu was grouped with U.S. Open winner Michelle Wie and last weeks Womens British Open champion Mo Martin. A large gallery followed the threesome. "It was really great to be playing with the two major champions," Ryu said. "I felt like I was one of the other major champions." Brittany Lang had the days low round (66) and was at 136 along with Kayla Mortellaro. Cristie Kerr (67) led the pack of six golfers at 137. Defending champ Beatriz Recari of Spain followed a 70 with a 68 and was at 138 along with Martin, who shot a 71. Wie missed the cut by seven strokes. Mark Andrews Ravens Jersey . However, the 38-year-old is in no hurry to sign with another team. "Im not in a rush. This will be my last contract, so I want to do it right," said Burris on Thursday. Mark Andrews Jersey . Gerald Green and Miles Plumlee? Green had bounced around the NBA when he wasnt playing overseas. The Pacers gave up on Plumlee after just one season. Now Green and Plumlee are key cogs in the Suns surprising breakout season. http://www.ravensrookiestore.com/Ravens-...ee-Jersey/ .com) - Mikko Korhonen carded a 5-under 67 on Thursday to claim medalist honors at the European Tours Final Qualifying Stage tournament.MADRID, Spain -- Defending champion Rafael Nadal gave his clay-court doldrums a boost by reaching the Madrid Open semifinals on Friday with a dominant performance against Thomas Berdych. In the womens tournament, two-time defending champion Serena Williams withdrew with a leg injury, while Maria Sharapova ousted Li Na in the quarterfinals. The top-ranked Nadal had lost his previous two quarterfinal matches on clay for his worst run on the surface in a decade. But buoyed on by a partisan crowd, Nadal overpowered Berdych 6-4, 6-2 to advance at the Magic Box. "I brought great energy and intensity to it and thats the best news, that its my best (on clay) yet," Nadal said. "The things that, historically, Ive done well on this surface I managed to do them again today." Nadal has been improving with every match in Madrid after losing at the quarterfinals stage in preceding tournaments in Monte Carlo and Barcelona. But he showed no sign of the nerves that had uncharacteristically crept into the game of the most successful clay-court player ever as he pushed Berdych to the corners and punished him with a powerful forehand that accounted for 16 of his winners. "My play is good when Im hitting my forehand well, especially on clay," said Nadal, who is vying for his third title in the Spanish capital. "In Monte Carlo I used my backhand more and not my forehand, and when I have to hit five or six backhands in a row it doesnt help my game." Berdych, who dropped to 3-18 against Nadal, couldnt keep up in the hot sun beating down on Manolo Santana centre court. Nadal faces countryman Roberto Bautista Agut after the 45th-ranked player beat Colombias Santiago Giraldo 6-3, 6-4. David Ferrer followed Bautista Aguts victory with a 7-6 (3), 6-3 win over Ernests Gulbis to become the third Spaniard in the semis. Kei Nishikori prevented an all-Spanish lineup in the final four by beating Feliciano Lopez 6-4, 6-4 inn the late match. Hayden Hurst Jersey. The win also ensures that he will become the first Japanese player to break into the top 10 when the new world rankings are released on Monday. Nishikori remained undefeated on clay this season in nine matches after winning the Barcelona Open title. The top-ranked Williams has had her left thigh heavily bandaged this week and said she injured it during a first-round victory over Belinda Bencic on Sunday. "It started to get better but, most importantly right now, I just need some time to rest and recover. Its beyond words. Its so frustrating," Williams said in a statement. "This is not the way I wanted this week to end." The withdrawal gave 2011 champion Petra Kvitova a walkover and a spot in the semifinals. The 32-year-old Williams said the injury would not keep her out of the French Open, with the defending champion tweeting she would play in Rome next week before the second Grand Slam of the season starts on May 25. Sharapova reached the semis after she rallied to beat Li 2-6, 7-6 (5), 6-3. Li was in control until she failed to convert two break points in the 11th game of the second set. Errors then began creeping into the Australian Open champions game as Sharapova evened the match. After an exchange of breaks in the third set, the ninth-ranked Russian broke again and then held serve to win on Lis 43rd unforced error. "It really could have gone her way today. You know, it was just a matter of a few points in the second set," said Sharapova, who came through despite seven doublefaults. "I was down, I didnt play a great first set, and I found a way to get myself in a position to be in the third." Sharapova faces third-ranked Agnieszka Radwanska in the semifinals after the Polish player beat French qualifier Caroline Garcia 6-4, 4-6, 6-4. Kvitova will face fourth-seeded Simona Halep after the Romanian ousted Ana Ivanovic of Serbia 6-2, 6-2. China Jerseys Cheap Cheap Jerseys Cheap NFL Jerseys Wholesale Discount NFL Jerseys Cheap Jerseys 2020 Wholesale Jerseys 2020 Wholesale NFL White Jerseys ' ' '
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