BENTON HARBOR, Mich. — Scott McCarron didn’t have time to think about his surgically repaired left ankle on Friday. Mother Nature wouldn’t let him.
“It was crazy,” McCarron said of the weather changes.
He shot a 5-under 66, including eight birdies, in the rain and wind at the Senior PGA Championship at Harbor Shores to share the early second-round lead at 8-under 134 with Canada’s Stephen Ames, who also shot 66.
“Weather (when) we teed off … was not too bad,” McCarron said. “(It was) 60 (degrees) and then we got to the third hole, and I think it dropped 10 or 15 degrees.”
Ames, who was born in Trinidad, was not a big fan of the temperatures but still made six birdies in his final 11 holes to offset a double-bogey for the second straight day.
“It’s not my cup of tea,” Ames said. “I’m not a fan of the cold weather even though I lived in Canada. But I never went out and played golf in this.”
McCarron, whose 11 PGA Tour Champions victories includes the 2017 Seniors Players major title, is coming off major reconstruction surgery of his left ankle and has just one top-25 finish this season in nine events. Ames, meanwhile, is 11th on the money list with $406,237 in earnings thanks to four top-10 finishes.
Many other golfers struggled a day after somewhat ideal scoring conditions produced 56 sub-par rounds at the Jack Nicklaus-designed course near Lake Michigan.
Four were two strokes behind the leaders at a 6-under 136: rookie money-leader Steven Alker of New Zealand; PGA Tour Champions legend Bernhard Langer of Germany; Florida’s Brian Gay; and Canadian Mike Weir (71).
Another four golfers were at 5-under 137, including South Africa’s Ernie Els (70), Australia’s Rod Pampling (68) and Americans Paul Goydos (68) and Tracy Phillips (68).