Birmingham, Alabama — Steve Stricker takes on Scott McCarron and Padraig Harrington in Round 2 of the Regions Tradition, the first of five majors of the PGA Tour Championship on Friday. and hit a 4-under 68 to maintain the lead by two strokes.
After winning second place and winning the last two trips to the Greystone Golf & Country Club, Stricker is continuing his comeback from a health hazard that spent nearly two weeks in the hospital last year.
He only made his first look of the tournament on the par 5 5th hole, but he didn’t lose the lead. It was 11-under-par 133.
“The three putt kind put a little slip into my rounds really quickly,” said Stricker, captain of the US Ryder Cup team that won the Whistling Straits last year. “But all in all, it was another great day because I did a lot of good work, played a lot on the fairways and was able to put on a great show.”
He was able to hit the ball after the first round on Thursday and said “there was a lot of energy.”
“When I woke up this morning, I was a little more tired,” Stricker said on Friday. “The most important thing is to take a few days off.”
McCarran was 65 and Harrington was 66.
Ernie Els, who was inducted into the World Golf Hall of Fame, was three shots behind her second straight 68. Els finished with a birdie once he saw the par 3 4th and 17th holes.
John Daly was disqualified for not signing the scorecard after 72 strokes. He started with 68. Daly went 4-under in the second round before making a double bogey on two of the last three holes.
Overall Field Score of Local Traditions
Starting from the back nine, McCarron made five birdies, six-hole stretches to his only bogey in round 18.
While making a comeback after undergoing ankle surgery in August, he did not go below 34th in his first eight competitions this year.
“I haven’t played a lot of good rounds or tournaments this year, but I’m happy to play,” McCarron said, adding that the first two rounds didn’t cause any major pain in his left foot. “I am still getting out of the surgery. The doctors said it would take about a year before I could really do it, but I’m ahead of schedule and I’m happy to play here.
“It was a nice bonus to be able to go out and play well today.”
Harrington closed the 66 with birdies on the 17th and 18th. This is his first local tradition.
“The golf course itself is quite intimidating,” Harrington said. “There are a lot of risks. You are always a little cautious.
“But obviously there are holes where you can score goals. A good shot makes a lot of birdies and eagles.”
Miguel Angel Jimenez, Stuart Appleby and Steven Alker were 7-under.
2018 champion Jimenez finished 15th and 70th after joining Wes Short Jr. in second place following round one. His tee shot came to a halt when he hit Els’ ball. Charles Schwab Cup scorer Alker hit 69 despite three bogeys in a row to match Appleby’s Day 2 score. Alker have won two of their last three matches and are in second place. Short rebounded to 73.