Casey overcomes triple-bogey to tie for US Open lead

Henrietta Strickland
June 19, 2017

Hopefully I do. I'll take it one step at a time.

With soft winds gently flowing above Erin Hills on Friday, and the fairways and greens still a tad soft after storms earlier in the week, the toughest test in golf is looking more and more like the former birdie-fest that was the Greater Milwaukee Open.

BROOKS KOEPKA, Paul Casey, Tommy Fleetwood and Brian Harman share the 36-hole lead at the U.S. Open with all four seeking their first major title.

Rory McIlroy is further back on 5-over and will miss the cut after carding a 71 in his second round. He'll head home to spend time with his son, River Jones Johnson, who was born Monday.

Lowry's front nine nearly saw the Esker Hills golfer play his way out of the tournament as he posted four bogeys with just the one shot gained.

"It's going to be a really cool day for someone tomorrow", the world number nine said. But I couldn't have shot any higher. I just struggled on the greens. Players noticed firmer greens that were allowing putts to race past the hole.

"It was still gettable", said Charley Hoffman, who has posted 70-70 and is three shots out of the lead.

Schauffele double bogeyed the par-3 13th hole.

Thomas made six birdies and one bogey on his front nine in the third round, and Hoffman birdied three of his first five holes.

At least he'll have plenty of company at the airport. Compatriots Jason Day and Adam Scott are both set to have the weekend off. "I guess it's rare you get through a U.S. Open or any major without some kind of a hiccup".

"As we all know, this game's all about putting", he said.

"I had been swinging it well and it felt really, really good a couple holes later to be picking the ball out of the hole for a birdie".

The last six majors have crowned first-time champions and that trend looks poised to continue at Erin Hills where you have to look way down the leaderboard to 19th before finding a major victor in U.S. Masters champion Sergio Garcia of Spain.

Despite a flurry of late birdies it was not enough to turnaround an erratic round littered with errors and missed opportunities.

His nine-under tour of rain-softened Erin Hills eclipsed the eight-under-par 63 carded by Johnny Miller in winning the 1973 U.S. Open at Oakmont, and matched the all-time low for any major of 63. No penalty was assessed, but after officials saw the video, they thought one might be called for.

The 2011 champion dropped back to seven over on his third hole today, before bouncing back with birdie on the following hole and made it to the turn remaining at six over par.

Stricker couldn't help but break into a wide smile when he made a 30-foot birdie putt on the 17th hole to get to 4 under for the day.

American Chez Reavie also scored 65 on a day when Erin Hills failed for the most part to bare its fangs.

Amazingly it could have been even better if not for bogeys on the fourth and 10th, as well as a missed eagle putt from six feet on the 15th after he had driven the green on the 288-yard par four.

"If I say it's right, he'll hit it", said the towering Finnis, who is 10 years Fleetwood's senior. I've got four weeks off now.

Day, at 10 over, said, "I mean, the scores were out there".

And for all the birdies and blunders at Erin Hills, the most compelling image Friday came from the parking lot, where one star after another left town after missing the cut.

The 2016 Masters champion withdrew before his tee time in the second round on Friday.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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