Friday’s golf: Armour, Simpson share Wyndham lead
Greensboro, N.C. — Ryan Armour shot a career-best 9-under 61 on Friday for a share of the lead with Webb Simpson after two rounds at the Wyndham Championship.
Armour and Simpson were at 13-under 127 halfway through the PGA Tour’s final event of the regular season. Simpson shot a 64.
Henrik Stenson was a stroke behind them after a 66. Ollie Schniederjans shot 63, Vaughn Taylor had a 66.
First-round leader Matt Every followed his 61 with a 72 to slip six strokes off the lead.
The field at Sedgefield Country Club is once again full of players trying to force their way off the bubble and qualify for the postseason. The top 125 players on the points list earn berths at The Northern Trust next week in New York.
At No. 187 on the list, Armour isn’t even close to the bubble.
“Could turn your life around,” Armour said. “I had some goals at the beginning of the week. I knew where I stood and, you know, right now the goals are attainable.”
The 41-year-old who has yet to win on tour and has bounced between the big tour and the Web.com Tour throughout his 14-year professional career, had nine birdies — five on his first nine holes, then four in a row on Nos. 5-8 — to quickly climb the leaderboard.
His round was two strokes better than his previous best of 63 nine years ago in Milwaukee.
Simpson, a North Carolina native who won here in 2011 and named his third child Wyndham, put himself in position to contend for his first victory since 2014.
He had four birdies on the first six holes of his back nine, pulling even with Armour at 13 under after his birdie on the par-5 15th.
“Keep making birdies, stay aggressive and know that there’s plenty of good golfers behind me,” Simpson said. “I got to keep the hammer down.”
Stenson, who started on the back nine, offset his lone bogey of the round — he missed a 15-foot par putt on the par-4 18th — with three birdies during the four-hole span between Nos. 4-7.
“The game plan is there,” he said. “I got the set-up in the bag to give me those numbers off the tee that we need and it’s just about going out there and playing, continue making birdies and giving myself birdie chances. It’s a low scoring golf course … keep it going.”
Among bubble players, No. 125 Geoff Ogilvy played his way to the weekend late in his round.
He had birdies on five of his final six holes to move to 4 under for the tournament — good enough to help him beat the cut line of 3 under.
And No. 141 Johnson Wagner had the shot of the tournament so far, with an albatross on the par-5 fifth, using a 5-iron to hole out his 215-yard second shot from the right fairway. It was the first double-eagle at the tournament since Fabian Gomez had one on No. 15 in 2011.
“I had a bunch of family that’s up by the green and they started going bananas,” Wagner said. “Pretty clear it had gone in.”
Wagner shot a 64 to move to 9 under.
Some others weren’t so fortunate: No. 126 Daniel Summerhays was at even par while No. 126 Cameron Tringale was 1 under.
At West Des Moines, Iowa, the United States swept the afternoon fourball matches to take a 5.5-2.5 lead over Europe in the Solheim Cup at Des Moines Golf and Country Club.
Lizette Salas and U.S. newcomer Danielle Kang each won two matches, teaming to beat Carlota Ciganda and Caroline Masson 1 up for the Americans’ lone full point in the morning foursomes, then leading the U.S. to its first ever fourball sweep in the afternoon.
Salas and rookie Angel Yin routed Ciganda and Emily Pedersen 6 and 5, and Kang and Michelle Wie topped Madelene Sagstrom and Jodi Ewart Shadoff 3 and 1. In the other fourball matches, Brittany Lincicome and Brittany Lang beat Masson and Florentyna Parker 3 and 2, and Stacy Lewis and Gerina Piller edged Charley Hull and Georgia Hall 2 and 1
In the morning foursomes, Americans Cristie Kerr and Lexi Thompson rallied to halve with Hull and Mel Reid. For Europe, Hall and Anna Nordqvist beat Paula Creamer and Austin Ernst 3 and 1, and Karine Icher and Catriona Matthew topped Lewis and Piller 1 up.