Compton more than inspiring - he's in contention


PINEHURST, N.C. – Erik Compton continues to amaze.

He wants to be known for his golf. He is. After all, he’s tied for second place at the U.S. Open, which is only the second major championship he’s ever played.

But then there’s the other thing. You know, the fact that Compton has received two heart transplants in his 34-year-old body, the first coming when he was 12, the last coming six years ago. This is pretty heady stuff.

Compton and Rickie Fowler were the only two players to break par on Saturday at Pinehurst No. 2, and both shot 3-under 67.

“I’ve been playing kind of under the radar,” Compton said. “But I’ve been playing really very solid this year.”

Consistency has been key for Compton this year. He tied for fifth place at Bay Hill and New Orleans and tied for 12th at the Houston Open – those three finishes helping toward his $863,233 in earnings.

On a day that provided landmines all over the place, Compton calmly navigated his way through 18 holes with an eagle, five birdies and four bogeys.

A bogey on the third hole sent Compton off the radar like he mentioned, but a spiffy eagle on the par-5 fifth hole vaulted him back. He turned in 2-under 33, then promptly made birdie on Nos. 10 and 11. Compton played the final seven holes in 1 over for 67 to earn a spot in the championship’s penultimate group.

“I have been through a lot in my life, a lot more adrenaline pressure situations than hitting a tee shot on 18,” Compton said. “Putting things in perspective may help me.”