Some of the biggest names in golf arrived back at the Olympic Club on Friday more concerned with avoiding the cut line than reaching the top of the leaderboard.
Welcome to the 112th U.S. Open!
The notoriously challenging course in San Francisco lived up to its reputation as the "graveyard of champions" during Round 1. Among the luminaries struggling by the Bay was world No. 1 Luke Donald, who scuffled to a nine-over par. The second-ranked player Rory McIlroy signed off a +7 while the No. 3 player, who rounded out an afternoon trio, Lee Westwood shot +3 on the round.
Among the few golfers to put together an impressive outing was Round 1 leader Michael Thompson, who finished at -4. The 27-year-old finished his day with a birdie and went into the clubhouse with the lead in just his third major.
Of course, Thompson's performance wasn't the one that everyone was talking about. The disciplined manner in which Tiger Woods attacked Olympic had everyone buzzing. Woods' 1-under par performance was juxtaposed against the erratic efforts delivered by Phil Mickelson and Bubba Watson, who were paired with him.
After the trio had finished its 18 holes, Watson told reporters that "we saw the old Tiger today."
To the delight of fans, that same Tiger was back in action on Friday. Despite a rough patch in the middle of afternoon at Olympic, Woods headed for the clubhouse tied for the tournament lead with Jim Furyk at 1-under through 36 holes. Playing with the same discipline that he displayed in the first round, Tiger claimed the outright lead at one point only to fall back. Along the way, he was challenged by a 17-year-old amateur who briefly held the outright lead himself. Scroll down for a look back at Tiger's second round, the unlikely surge for the teenager Beau Hossler and Mickelson's fight to avoid the cut.
AS IT HAPPENED: TIGER'S ROUND 2:
06/15/2012 9:18 PM EDT
@ PGATOUR :
Tiger Woods posts even-par 70, joins Jim Furyk in clubhouse lead at 1-under. Phil birdies to post 71, is T52 at +7. Bubba +9 (T77). #USopen
06/15/2012 9:18 PM EDT
Finishing In Style
Phil and Bubba both finish with a birdie on 18 to pull a stroke back. That looks like it could keep Phil around for the weekend at +7. And even Watson has an outside chance if the cut line moves as everyone else finishes up. The Masters champ is at +9.
06/15/2012 9:15 PM EDT
T1 Furky -1
T1 Woods -1
T1 Toms -1
T4 Colsaerts +1
T8 Adams +2
T11 Dufner +3
T19 Stricker +4
T19 Els +
06/15/2012 9:07 PM EDT
Feast Or Famine
Harrington sinks a fourth birdie of the day. He also has four bogies. He is at +4.
06/15/2012 9:05 PM EDT
With a putt for the outright lead, Tiger rolls it several feet toward the hole but it won't bend right like he wants and skirts the left edge. He is as angry as he's been all day. That recovery chip is bit less lustrous. He taps in for par and stays level with Furyk and Toms as he heads for the 18th hole.
06/15/2012 9:02 PM EDT
Phil had a very makeable birdie chance on 17, which he needs to drop below that cut line but it won't go down. He saves par but might have just missed a chance to save Saturday.
06/15/2012 9:01 PM EDT
@ DaveLewissports :
Tiger's recovery on 17 amazing after ridiculous penalizing roll. #usopen #kcbsnews
06/15/2012 9:00 PM EDT
Woods chips back on to the green from that seemingly terrible spot with a terrific ball. Height was right, speed was right. He just lifts it up the hill and then gets a friendly roll.
06/15/2012 8:57 PM EDT
Hossler On His Day
"It was pretty special. I knew out there I was going well. I was looking at the leaderboard obviously. But it was pretty special. I saw my name up there on 2 under and I think the rest of the guys were 1 under. Um, it was amazing. I knew.. I feel comfortable out there, though. I mean, I never really got that nervous, other than the first tee shot, really. But in the middle of the round I felt very comfortable. [I] knew all my fans were supporting me so it was really special."
06/15/2012 8:51 PM EDT
Over The Top
With his 2nd shot on No. 17, Woods' shot is too strong. It bounces at the front end of the green and rolls over the green, rolls right past the flag and down the end.. down.. down an incline and that's trouble. Tiger is displeased. He does keep his composure (relative to the Masters).