Collin Morikawa soars to prime of U.S. Open leaderboard with 4-under 66; tied with Joel Dahmen after 2 rounds

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BROOKLINE, Mass. — For each Collin Morikawa and his consecutive years profitable a significant there’s a Joel Dahmen, who simply 4 years in the past would have been delighted to play in a single.

Jon Rahm is the defending US Open champion, one shot off the lead. He’ll play the weekend at The Nation Membership with Hayden Buckley, who studied whereas taking part in in Missouri as a result of he thought he would want to discover a job after school.

The dozen gamers separated by two pictures earlier than the weekend embody the highest three gamers on the earth rankings and 4 of the highest seven: Masters champion Scottie Scheffler, Rahm, Rory McIlroy and Morikawa.

“I believe it is nice for the sport of golf that the top-ranked gamers and the highest gamers are up there, particularly within the event the place actually the highest participant finally ends up profitable,” Rahm stated.

It additionally contains two PGA Tour rookies and two gamers who’ve by no means gained on Tour.

Certainly, this US Open has one thing for everybody. He simply would not have Phil Mickelson, who missed the minimize by eight pictures.

Morikawa was on the lookout for one thing in his sport and located a “draw child” as an alternative of his conventional fade, and it has labored splendidly on Brookline. He matched the championship’s lowest rating on Friday with a 4-under 66 to share the lead with Dahmen, the most cancers survivor and common everyman in golf.

Rahm did his finest to maintain up with an eagle and a collection of massive par putts that felt simply as beneficial. Rahm had a 67 and was within the five-player group one shot behind. That included McIlroy, coming off a Canadian Open win, who sped by the again 9 with three birdies in his final 4 holes for a 69.

To not be ignored is Scheffler, the No. 1 participant on the earth, who chipped in from thick tough earlier than the par-5 14th inexperienced for an eagle that introduced the Texan again into the combo with a 67. He was two pictures behind. .

Morikawa, Rahm and Scheffler have mixed to win 4 of the final 9 majors. After which there’s McIlroy, who has 4 majors on his personal, however none since 2014.

“It is the US Open. Nobody has gone deep into it till now and it is slipped away,” Morikawa stated. “The previous couple of days have given me an enormous confidence increase heading into this weekend, and hopefully we will half methods indirectly.”

The thought of ​​the US Open is to determine the most effective gamers. A few of them require some introductions to the key championship competition over the weekend.

Begin with Dahmen, who won’t ever be accused of taking himself too significantly, even when he does take his sport significantly. He considered withdrawing from the 36-hole qualifier twice final week, earlier than it began and after the primary spherical.

However he held on, and with a 68 on Friday, he’s taking part in within the closing group of a significant for the primary time. He joined Morikawa at 5-under 135.

“We do not exit till 3:45 tomorrow. I normally need to be residence by 5 for dinner,” Dahmen stated. “So this shall be completely different, for positive.”

The group one shot behind contains Buckley, who wasn’t on the US Open till he made a 20-foot birdie putt in a playoff for final place in his standings 11 days in the past.

He was fading, like so many others, with three bogeys throughout a five-hole stretch across the bend when he bought again on monitor. Birdies on the final two holes gave him one other 68.

Additionally at 136 had been Aaron Smart, with one PGA Tour win and nothing higher than a tie for seventeenth in his earlier 9 majors; and Beau Hossler, who confirmed up over the weekend on the Olympic Membership as a teen beginner in 2012 however hasn’t been heard from since within the majors.

They had been examples that the open-to-all US Open would not cease with simply qualifying for the proper to play golf’s hardest take a look at.

Related Press contributed to this report.

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