Robert Rock takes two-shot lead at Scottish Open
Robert Rock, ranked No. 244, set the record for the lowest 36-hole total since the Scottish Open was launched by the European Tour in 1972, adding a 7-under 63 in the second round Friday to his 64 on Day 1 at Gullane, Scotland. So far, he’s made 13 birdies and not dropped a shot.
The English golfer has a two-shot lead on 13-under 127, and a great chance of earning one of the final qualification spots for next week’s British Open just up the east coast of Scotland.
‘‘It’s everything for me,’’ Rock said.
On a day when players shot low scores because of a lack of wind, the course record was broken twice — by Connor Syme of Scotland (62) and then Hideto Tanihara of Japan (61).
The layout has only been played once before, at the Scottish Open in 2015.
Tyrrell Hatton (64) and unheralded Swede Jens Dantorp (65) were the closest challengers to Rock. Eddie Pepperell (63) and Rickie Fowler (66), the winner at Gullane three years ago, were a shot further back.
PGA — Michael Kim took a four-shot lead at the John Deere Classic in the Quad Cities, which was suspended twice because of weather concerns. Kim, who is winless in 84 career PGA Tour starts, was 16 under through 35 holes, with the second round still to be completed Saturday morning at Silvis, Ill.. Kim birdied eight of his first 14 holes without a bogey to race past first-round leader Steve Wheatcroft, who shot 68. Wheatcroft was 12 under along with David Hearn (64) and Johnson Wagner (66).
Francesco Molinari was 11 under along with Matt Jones and Bronson Burgoon, who made two eagles and was 8 under for the round with three holes to play.
The 24-year-old Kim pushed his lead to three shots by hitting a wedge from 111 yards to within 5 feet for birdie on the par-4 13th.
Kim, who had missed the cut in 14 of 22 starts this season, followed that up with a 13-footer for birdie on the par-4 14th.
Wheatcroft, who led on Thursday after the best round of his career, made three bogeys on his back nine. But he’s still in position for his first top-10 finish of the season.
LPGA — Brooke Henderson shot a bogey-free 5-under 66 to move into a tie for the lead after two rounds at the Marathon Classic in Sylvania, Ohio. The 20-year-old Canadian and Caroline Hedwall of Sweden were at 9-under 133 through 36 holes. Thidapa Suwannapura was one shot back.
Henderson and Hedwall each birdied the final two holes at Highland Meadows, which are par 5s.
The 29-year-old Hedwall is looking for her first LPGA Tour victory. The Swede matched a career high for the lowest 36-hole score of her career. Like Henderson, she birdied the last two holes to move to the top of the leaderboard. Thidapa Suwannapura was one shot back and defending champion I.K. Kim was three strokes behind.
Champions — Scott Parel grabbed a one-stroke lead in the Constellation Senior Players Championship, shooting a 6-under 66 in the second round to reach 11 under at Highland Park, Ill.. Parel, seeking his first PGA Tour Champions win, made seven birdies after starting the day two shots off the lead. Jeff Maggert (68) and Brandt Jobe (67) are tied at 10 under in the fourth of five majors on the tour’s schedule.
Three-time champion Bernhard Langer (67), defending champion Scott McCarron (68), Kenny Perry (70) and Vijay Singh (67) were in a pack two strokes off the lead.
Senior women — Laura Davies and Trish Johnson recovered from rough stretches after two rounds of the inaugural US Senior Women’s Open at Wheaton, Ill.. Both stand at 4-under par 142 through 36 holes.
Johnson had an eagle on the par-5 fourth hole to cap a comeback, finishing with a 2-under 71 in the sweltering heat at Chicago Golf Club.
Davies struggled early on the back nine with a double bogey at 11, and fell to even-par overall before four birdies in six holes put her back at the top of the leaderboard.
Juli Inkster is third at 1-under 145 after a 71. Danielle Ammaccapane fought back with a 71 after a rough first round and trails by four shots.