Shepley on fire under the sun

Jessica Shepley blasts out of the bunker during the Pro-Am prior to the start of CN Canadian...

Jessica Shepley blasts out of the bunker during the Pro-Am prior to the start of CN Canadian Women's Tour. (Errol McGihon/QMI Agency File)

TODD SAELHOF, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 8:54 PM ET

COQUITLAM, B.C. - Hot weather seems to really agree with Jessica Shepley.

It's where she appears to do her best work.

The Oakville, Ont., native is making a run at her best-ever LPGA Tour career finish right here on home soil.

Under hot, sunny conditions Saturday, the 29-year-old Canadian put up a 2-under-70 round to move her closer to her career-best tournament — a tie for 27th place last April in Hawaii.

"I had a number in my head (Saturday)," said Shepley, now tied for 32nd at the 2012 CN Canadian Women's Open. "And I was pretty close to that number.

"I'd like to get into (under-par) red numbers (overall). I'd like to have my best finish out here — that would be nice."

Shepley, in her fourth LPGA campaign, already has the best finish among Canadians in this year's event -- tied for 32nd at 1-over 217 after 54 holes.

Of 15 Canucks, she's the last one standing at the Vancouver Golf Club.

So she'll defend the honour she also won last year at the Hillsdale Golf & Country Club in Mirabel, Que., where she tied for 45th and took home $9,092.

"I think as long as I sign my scorecard (Sunday), I've got (the Canadian title) locked up," Shepley said, with a smile.

"I had a lot of cheers and congrats and good lucks … It was a lot of fun," Shepley said.

Saturday's round saw her birdie her opening and fourth holes of the day before closing out the front nine with a bogey and earning one bird on the back.

"It's a lot different than it's been the last couple of months. I was really relaxed and actually enjoyed playing golf for the first time in a long time," she said. "Maybe I get a couple of more putts to drop, and you never know what can happen."

todd.saelhof@sunmedia.ca

On Twitter: @SUNToddSaelhof


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