Elkington Mickelson Lead Way at BellSouth


Some major names are making some noise before the seasons first major championship.
Steve Elkington and Phil Mickelson share the lead through the second round of the BellSouth Classic in Duluth, Ga. Elkington, the overnight leader, shot 3-under 69 Friday to move to 11-under-par 133 for the event. 2000 BellSouth champion Mickelson matched his overall score with a 68 in round two.
Reigning U.S. Open champion Retief Goosen is one back after a 66. European Ryder Cupper Padraig Harrington (65) is also at minus 10, thanks to tying his career low round on the PGA Tour.
Jesper Parnevik shot 69 to move to 9-under. Also in the mix is Phil Tataurangi. The Kiwi fired the low round of the day, an 8-under 64, to tie Parnevik.
The BellSouth is the final event before the players take I-20 to Augusta for the Masters Tournament.
Mickelson continued to prepare for his major quest by posting six birdies and two bogeys at the TPC at Sugarloaf. Elkington, the 1995 PGA champion, made four birdies to just one bogey.
The Aussie, however, will not be competing at Augusta National. For the second straight season, he failed to qualify for the invitational. Since his last tour victory at Doral in 1999, Elkington has finished 154th and 117th on the money list. Hes plummeted all the way to 162nd in the Official World Golf Ranking.
'I like winning,' he said. 'I haven't had many opportunities, but I do appreciate them when I get them. I'd like to do well here on Saturday and Sunday.'
Elkington has missed the cut in four of eight tournaments this year and has only four top-10 finishes since the start of the 2000 season. Part of the reason has been due to a series of injuries.
'I'm only 39,' he said. 'I have plenty of time. I feel fit now, and I feel I have a lot of good golf in me. I am strong. I am big. I hit it plenty far ... and I've got all that experience now.'
Parneviks round was the most entertaining Friday. The Swede holed his second shot with a 6-iron from 172 yards on the first hole. He then aced the par-3 eighth with a 5-iron from 217 yards. He also added three birdies, two bogeys and one double to his card.
Goosen, likewise, recorded two eagles. He made a 3 on the par-5 sixth, and a 2 on the par-4 13th.
Full-field scores from the BellSouth Classic