Jim Colbert saved par on each of the nine greens he missed in regulation during a bogey-free round Friday and established a one-shot lead at the halfway point of the PGA Seniors Championship in Palm Beach Gardens, Fla.
“I used all my skills today,” Colbert said after completing a second consecutive 3-under-par 69 on the Champions course of the PGA Resort.
“This is the most rough we’ve ever played on the Senior Tour,” Colbert said after reaching the halfway point at 138, 6 under par.
The masterful scrambling exhibition left him one in front of Isao Aoki of Japan, who also had a 69.
Jack Nicklaus, 55, got a place among the leaders with the best round of the tournament. The 66 ranked as one of the most bizarre rounds of his career.
“I want to tell you, that was some round. Wow!” Nicklaus said after an effort that included six birdies, two eagles, two bogeys and a double bogey.
He hit only six fairways and 10 greens, but used just 21 strokes on the greens.
Nicklaus was 6-over after four holes and was looking at missing the cut. By the 15th, he was 3-under and looking at the lead.
Arnold Palmer, 65, playing a few holes behind Nicklaus, shot the worst round of his 40-year professional career, a shabby 86 that included 10 bogeys, a double bogey, a triple bogey and just one birdie. He left without comment.
Nicklaus’ was in a large group at 142.
Tom Lehman, finally displaying a steady putter to match his pinpoint irons, shot a 65 to take the second-round lead as Greg Norman withdrew from the MCI Classic because of a painful back.
Lehman started the day at Hilton Head Island, S.C., with five straight pars, then birdied six of his final 13 holes to complete the two rounds at 10-under 132. He holds a four-stroke lead over John Daly, Payne Stewart, Jesper Parnevik, Bob Tway and first-round co-leader Gene Sauers.
At Pinehurst, N.C., Caroline Pierce, winless in eight years on the LPGA Tour, shot a 3-under-par 69 in windy conditions for a two-shot lead after the first round of the inaugural Pinewild Women’s Championship.
A self-proclaimed good wind player from England, Pierce got in five holes among the tall pines with a morning tee time before gusts of 25-30 mph made conditions extremely difficult on the 6,426-yard Pinewild Country Club layout.
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