Caledonia's Brett White clings to 1-shot lead heading into Michigan Open third round
Caledonia’s Brett White finished 2-under 70 to check in at 8-under 136 Tuesday to maintain a one-shot lead at the Turtle Creek Casino Michigan Open Championship.
The footsteps White’s hearing, though, have a familiar sound as Benny Cook, also from Caledonia, is closing in after finishing 69 for 137 on The Bear at Grand Traverse Resort and Spa.
“We went to different high schools and they were in different divisions, but we played the local tournaments, played a lot together, so it’s been pretty cool seeing his success as he’s turned pro,” White said of Cook, who recently won the Michigan PGA Championship.
“I’m not surprised he’s playing well and tomorrow we do it again. I shot 70 after a 66 and tomorrow I start all over again. I didn’t think about yesterday out there today. It was a completely different course with the setup. The wind was completely different. So every day, you go out there and start again and stick to your plan.”
A crowd is involved with 12 golfers within four shots of the lead as the $115,000 championship reached the halfway mark.
Ben VanScoyk of Grand Rapids, shot 70 for 138 and is two shots behind at 138.
Defending champion Eric Lilleboe of Okemos shot 69 to move within three shots at 139. He was tied with 68-shooting Reed Hrynewich of Muskegon, a former University of Michigan golfer who has come back to pro golf after a three-year work hiatus, and Traverse City’s Patrick Colburn, who shot 67 and is transitioning back to amateur status after being a professional.
Six golfers checked in at 140, four off the pace, and included six-time champion Scott Hebert of Traverse City Golf & Country Club, who shot 71, and 2011 Open champion Randy Hutchinson, a Traverse City mini-tour professional.
The others at 140 were top Michigan PGA section player John Seltzer of Grand Rapids, who shot 68, 2018 Michigan Amateur champion and now pro Beau Breault of Howell, who shot 71, Grand Valley State sophomore Charles DeLong of DeWitt, who shot 71, and Jerred Barley, a professional from Tipton who shot 69.
The 36-hole fell at 6-over 150 with 72 players moving on to Wednesday’s third round.
White, who is playing his first tournament since May after suffering sciatic nerve issues in his back, highlighted his round with an eagle on the par 5 No. 6 hole. He hit a 4-iron 221 to four feet and made the putt.
“I got off to a good start, but towards the end, I was leaking oil a little bit,” he said. “Overall, it was under par and I’ll always take under par.”