STARKVILLE, Miss. -- Mississippi State's Ally McDonald
fired a second-straight 72 Wednesday at the North & South Women's Amateur Championship to sit in eighth, while teammate Ji Eun Baik
opened match play at the U.S. Women's Amateur Public Links Championship with an impressive 3 & 2 win.
McDonald, the defending North & South Amateur champion, fought back from an early double bogey at Pinehurst No. 8 to turn in a 1-over card that put her at 2-over-par 144 and four shots back of clubhouse leaders Casey Danielson, Alison Lee and Lauren Kim.
After recording at double bogey at the 2nd, the Fulton, Miss., native answered with a birdie at No. 7 before falling back to 4-over with bogeys at Nos. 9 and 10. MSU's two-time all-American fought like she always does, however, and answered with back-to-back birdies on Nos. 11 and 12.
McDonald tees off her third round at 7:42 a.m. CST on the first tee.
While McDonald was rallying in North Carolina, Baik put together a commanding performance to win her match-play opener 3 & 2 at The Home Course in DuPont, Wash.
After dropping the opening hole to fellow Floridian Carly Ray Goldstein, Baik won the next two holes to go 1-up in the match. She never relinquished the lead, going 2-up through six and 4-up with wins at Nos. 12 and 14.
Goldstein cut the advantage at 15, but Baik halved the 16th to clinch the win.
The Ponte Vedra native will face Katharine Patrick of West University Place, Texas, at 11:40 a.m. CST in Thursday's Round of 32.