LAKE FOREST, Ill. – On a day when many players struggled with swirling winds at Conway Farms Golf Club, Jim Furyk broke through to card just the sixth round of 59 in PGA Tour history. Here’s how things shape up after two rounds of the BMW Championship, where Furyk shares the lead with Brandt Snedeker:
What it means: All eyes Friday were on Furyk, who curled in a birdie putt from inside four feet on the ninth hole, his last of the day, to card golf’s magic number. It propels him into a share of the lead, as he and Snedeker now have distanced themselves somewhat from the field with two rounds remaining.
Round of the day: Furyk’s record-breaking round included a hole-out for eagle at the 15th and a three-putt bogey on No. 5. In between, the former U.S. Open champ carded 11 birdies and just five pars, taking just 23 putts while reaching 17 of 18 greens in regulation.
Best of the rest: A week after being named to the Presidents Cup squad – largely at the expense of Furyk – Jordan Spieth moved into contention thanks to a 6-under 65 during Friday’s second round. The 20-year-old sandwiched a pair of bogeys around eight birdies at Conway Farms, and as a result will head into the weekend tied for fourth, five shots off the pace.
Biggest disappointment: One year after winning this event at Crooked Stick, Rory McIlroy carded a 6-over 77 Friday to drop into last place among the 70-man field. The Ulsterman now finds himself 13 over after two rounds of play and a whopping 24 shots off the lead as his playoff run appears to be heading for an early exit prior to next week’s Tour Championship.
Main storyline heading into Saturday: The brunt of the attention will remain on Furyk as he looks to back up his incredible round while dueling with Snedeker, among others, for the BMW title. A large group of players sit five shots off the pace at 6 under, though, including Spieth, Nick Watney and former Masters champion Charl Schwartzel.
Shot of the day: Already 4 under through five holes, Furyk holed his approach from 115 yards at the short par-4 15th, an eagle that further spurred his round. The veteran would go on to birdie two of his next three holes to turn in 7-under 28 en route to his astonishing round of 59.
Quote of the day: “I just told myself on 9, I said, ‘How many opportunities are you going to have in your life to do this? Got to take advantage of it.” – Furyk