Napa, Calif. — Bryson DeChambeau hasn’t had much chance to get familiar with his wedge after changing to a graphite shaft this week. The Northern California native certainly looked comfortable enough Friday as he attacked pin after pin to surge up the leaderboard at the Safeway Open.
DeChambeau shot a bogey-free 8-under 64 on Friday to take a two-shot lead in the Safeway Open.
DeChambeau had a 12-under 132 total at Silverado Country Club. The 26-year-old matched two others for the best round of the day and was in line to extend his lead, but left a 20-foot eagle putt short on No. 18.
“It’s always fun to come out and play to the potential you know you can,” DeChambeau said. “The greens got a little bumpy this afternoon but they’re still rolling nice enough to make some putts. I was able to control my line, control my speed and have a couple of them drop in.”
DeChambeau missed the cut at the season-opening event at The Greenbrier, didn’t play in last week’s Sanderson Farms Championship and got off to a slow start this week with an opening-round 68 that left him four shots back.
After beginning the second round with four consecutive pars, DeChambeau birdied No. 5, sank a 35-footer for birdie on No. 6, then had a tap in for another birdie on No. 8. He opened the back nine with three straight birdies, made another birdie on No. 14 then closed with a final birdie on 18.
“I knew if I could go work on my swing like I did yesterday and come out and feel comfortable like I did today, I’d come out and shoot a low number,” DeChambeau said.
Nick Watney was second after a 65. Watney needed just 22 putts to complete his round and stay within range of DeChambeau.
“(The greens) are getting a little bit crispy right now, but they rolled pretty pure for me,” Watney said.
Justin Thomas made nine birdies and matched DeChambeau with a 64 that left him tied with Nick Taylor (66), Dylan Frittelli (65), Adam Long (68) and Cameron Champ (68) at 9 under.
First-round leaders Adam Scott and Andrew Landry tumbled down the leaderboard.
Scott struggled off the tee most of the afternoon and shot a 73 to fall into tie for 14th at 6 under. Landry shot 74 and drop to 5 under.
A few big names won’t be playing over the weekend.
Phil Mickelson shot 69 but was doomed by an opening 75 that included a quadruple bogey. Defending champion Kevin Tway bogeyed the final hole for a 72 to miss the cut by a stroke.
“The way I see it, there were eight par 5s and I’ve got to play those 4 to 6 under par to have a chance to win,” Mickelson said. “I played them 4 over. So there’s eight to 10 shots right there on simply the par 5s. It tells me that some areas are OK, but that’s the area that I’ve got to improve on.”
Tony Romo, the former NFL quarterback and current CBS analyst, also missed the cut, following an opening 70 with a 78. If he had made the cut, he planned to skip Sunday’s NFL broadcast in Chicago between the Bears and Minnesota Vikings.
Brian Stuard (Oakland/Jackson) shot back-to-back 70s to make the cut at 2 under, while Ryan Brehm (Michigan State/Midland) shot a second straight 72 to miss the cut by two strokes.
Rod Pampling eagled the par-5 18th at Pebble Beach for a 5-under 67 and a share of the Pure Insurance Championship lead in his PGA Tour Champions debut.
Pampling, the Australian who turned 50 on Monday, had three birdies in a six-hole stretch on the front nine, then made 11 straight pars before the closing eagle. He won the last of his three PGA Tour titles in 2017.
Joey Sindelar joined Pampling atop the leaderboard late in the afternoon. Fifteen players were 4 under, with Bernhard Langer, Retief Goosen, Marco Dawson, Steve Jones, Doug Barron, Russ Cochran, Paul Goydos, Jerry Kelly and Tom Lehman shooting 67 at Poppy Hills, and three-time champion Steve Flesch, David Frost, Greg Kraft, Kent Jones, Gene Sauers and Scott Parel shooting 68 at Pebble Beach.
Charles Schwab Cup leader Scott McCarron and Lake Orion's Tom Gillis each had a 69 at Poppy Hills.
In Indianapolis, Mi Jung Hur shot a 2-under 70 in windy conditions to take a two-stroke lead into the weekend at the Indy Women in Tech Championship.
A day after opening with a bogey-free 63, Hur had six birdies — four on par 5s — along with two bogeys and a double bogey to get to 11 under at Brickyard Crossing, the layout that features four holes inside the Indianapolis Motor Speedway oval. The South Korean player won the Ladies Scottish Open last month for her third LPGA Tour victory.
Sakura Yokomine of Japan was second, following an opening 65 with a 70.
Marina Alex, coming off the United States’ Solheim Cup loss to Europe, was 7 under with Puerto Rico’s Maria Torres. Alex had a 71, and Torres shot 68. Kendall Dye (69), Amy Olson (72), Tiffany Chan (65) and Pornanong Phatlum (72) were 6 under.
Two years after winning a prestigious amateur title at St. Andrews, Matthew Jordan enjoyed more success on the famous Old Course by shooting 8-under 64 to lead the Dunhill Links Championship in Scotland.
The 23-year-old English player led by one stroke after two rounds, with his bogey-free score at St. Andrews coming a day after shooting 6-under 66 at Kingsbarns.
Matthew Southgate, ranked No. 300, shot 66 at Kingsbarns to join No. 126 Calum Hill (65 at St. Andrews) and No. 265 Joakim Lagergren (62 at Kingsbarns) in a tie for second place on 13 under overall.
Justin Rose was 8 under after nine holes at Kingsbarns, and had nine birdies and an eagle in total in his round of 64, leaving the world No. 4 in a six-way share on fifth place on 12 under.
Rory McIlroy was 5 under after five holes, but only picked up one more birdie in shooting a bogey-free 66 at Kingsbarns. The No. 2-ranked McIlroy was at 8 under, six strokes off the lead.