Half the field resumes 2nd round with Kuchar in lead at PGA _ for now

By Nancy Armour, AP
Saturday, August 14, 2010

Half the field resumes 2nd round at PGA

SHEBOYGAN, Wis. — Play has resumed at the PGA Championship — on time.

Half of the field, including Tiger Woods and Bubba Watson, returned to Whistling Straits early Saturday to finish their second rounds and maybe restore some order to the year’s final major. Thick fog delayed the start of play the first two days of the PGA, wreaking havoc on tee times and further muddling what was already a wide-open championship. Only one player in the top 10 has won a major, and one guy’s best finish is a win on the Nationwide Tour.

The lone constant has been Matt Kuchar, who took the lead with a birdie on his first hole of the day and was still there some 10 hours later, when play was halted because of darkness. His 69 in the second round left him at 8 under with a one-stroke lead over Nick Watney.

“I’m not sure when I’m going to tee off or when they are going to finish the second round even,” Watney said. “So it’s a bit strange when usually the cut is being made around this time.”

Jim Furyk made a birdie on his first hole Saturday to get to 4 under. Also at 4 under after a par on his first hole is Watson, whose 68 gave him a share of the clubhouse lead Thursday.

Few are playing Whistling Straits with more ease or confidence than Kuchar. He made only two bogeys in his first two rounds, along with eight birdies and an eagle. He nearly holed out again from the 13th fairway again Friday. He’s hit 23 of 28 fairways, and needed only 52 putts.

“I’m very pleased with the way I’ve been playing,” Kuchar said. “I’m putting well, staying out of trouble.”

But his lead is far from safe, not with so many players chasing him and more bad weather on the horizon.

Bryce Molder, Kuchar’s teammate at Georgia Tech, is three strokes behind his good friend after shooting 5-under 67. Also at 5 under are Jason Dufner (66), 19-year-old S.Y. Noh (71), big-hitting Dustin Johnson (68), Simon Khan (70), Rory McIlroy (68) and 2007 Masters champion Zach Johnson (70).

Phil Mickelson scrambled his way to a 69, putting him at 2 under — and very much alive in his quest to move to No. 1 in the world for the first time.

After showing signs of the old, masterful Woods in the first round, the unpredictable play that’s marked his woeful year was back on display. He scrambled for pars off a cart path, out of grass up to his knees and from a grassy knoll.

When the horn sounded, he’d played six holes and made six pars, keeping him at 1 under.

“Had to hang in there, and did a good job with that,” he told a PGA official.

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