'I love coming here, it's one of my favorite events of the year,' Pernice said Saturday after making two birdies to finish Round 2 with 19 points and the lead halfway through golf's most novel event, one featuring two cuts and the modified Stableford scoring system.
'I'm going to have a little breakfast and take it easy for a while and then get ready to go,' said Pernice, who was set to tee off again two hours later.
Pernice was among half the field of 140 golfers who had to return to Castle Pines at dawn to complete the second round. Play was delayed more than 3 1/2 hours by a thunderstorm Friday afternoon that dumped more than a half inch of rain on the majestic mountain course.
When dusk came Friday, Patrick Sheehan was the clubhouse leader with 18 points and Ian Leggett stood at 17 after a 13-point round that included two eagles.
Under this special scoring system, two points are awarded for a birdie, five for an eagle and eight for a double eagle. One point is deducted for a bogey, three for a double bogey or worse.
On Saturday, Duffy Waldorf joined Leggatt and Stewart Cink in third place with 17 points after posting a 14-point second round that included five birdies and an eagle. At 16, one ahead of defending champion Retief Goosen, were Sergio Garcia, Tom Lehman, Jeff Gove and Brett Quigley.
The top 70 golfers teed off again Saturday for Round 3, after which the top 36 scorers plus ties will play Sunday with a $990,000 check awaiting the winner.
Phil Mickelson failed to make the cut and will have the rest of the weekend to focus on the PGA Championship at Medinah next week instead of chasing his third title at the International.
Mickelson's putter failed him for 36 holes in the lush foothills of the Rocky Mountains, leaving him with just five points. Still, he wasn't worried heading into the last major of the season.
'I think it's more just the putting,' Mickelson said. 'I've just really struggled on the greens here. Otherwise, I've been pretty pleased with the way I'm hitting it.'
More rain was expected over the weekend -- the International has been interrupted by inclement weather each of the 21 times it's been held. That is one reason founder Jack Vickers accepted the PGA's offer to move the tournament to the Fourth of July weekend next year. There also was the hope Tiger Woods will play the event for the first time since 1999.