Kuchar maintains Colonial lead as Round 2 concludes


Matt Kuchar held on to the second-round lead with three pars after rising early Saturday morning to conclude the suspended second round of the Crowne Plaza Invitational at Colonial.

Kuchar was among 54 players forced to return to the course for a 7:15 a.m. (local time) resumption of play after rain delays Friday prevented completion of the second round. Ryan Palmer, who led the first round after opening with an 8-under-par 62, did not have as easy a time finishing his suspended round, making two bogeys over six holes Saturday morning to drop four shots behind Kuchar.

With a 5-under-par 65, Kuchar sits at 10 under overall, a shot better than Graham DeLaet (67) and two better than Josh Teater (67), Jordan Spieth (67) and Steve Flesch (64), each of whom was able to finish his round on Friday.

Kuchar will go off the first tee in the final pairing of the third round Saturday with DeLaet and Teater at 1:30 p.m. local time. The PGA Tour is sending players out in threesomes on split tees after so many players had to return to complete the second round. The weather forecast Saturday calls for mostly cloudy skies this afternoon with a 40 percent chance of thunderstorms beginning at 4 p.m. local time.

Defending champ Zach Johnson (65) is four off the lead. He’s bidding to join Ben Hogan as the only players to win back-to-back Colonials. Hogan did it twice (1946-47 and 1952-53). Johnson has posted scores in the 60s in 17 of his last 18 rounds at Colonial.

Kuchar grabbed the 36-hole lead for the sixth time in his PGA Tour career. He closed the deal once in five previous tries, winning The Players Championship in 2012.

Martin Laird made a 19-foot birdie at the last hole Saturday morning to become the last player to make the cut. Seventy-eight players made the cut at 1-under 139 and better. Charl Schwartzel and Corey Pavin were among those who missed the cut.