Talor Gooch signed a card of 65 strokes (-5) this Friday to take the lead with -13 after two rounds of the RSM Classic at a breezy Sea Island Golf Club on Sea Island.
Playing on the par 70 Seaside course, Gooch’s Friday round included a 66-foot putt for the Eagle on the par-5 seventh hole, bringing him to 4-under for the day. He had two birdies and a bogey on the final nine holes to take the lead after 36 holes for the first time in his career.
John Huh and the leader of the first round, Colombian Sebastián Muñoz, were tied for second place with -12while Canada’s Taylor Moore and Mackenzie Hughes were tied for fourth at 11 under.
Gooch hopes to follow the trend of the RSM Classic, in which each of the last five leaders after two rounds have gone on to win the tournament.
“You know there are going to be tough things, there are going to be a lot of uncomfortable shots,” Gooch said of playing in the wind on Friday, after the calm conditions in the first round. “Being here a few times when it’s been like this, you know what to expect.
“Growing up in Oklahoma, you feel like you have a bit of an advantage when it comes to the windy conditions.”
Huh rose through the standings on Friday after a 5-under 67 at the par-72 Plantation course. He closed with four birdies over the final nine holes.
Munoz, also on the Plantation Course, posted a 2-under-70 on Friday compared to his 10-under-60 in the first round on the Seaside Course.
“I feel like the thing today was patience,” Muñoz said. “As if we knew it was going to be difficult to hit the right distance or the right lines, so that was today, and yesterday I was just executing every shot. So I don’t know, my state of mind (has been the key), I guess.”
Moore’s 5-under 65 at the Seaside Course included a hole-in-one on the 179-yard 17th hole.
“Honestly, it’s a pretty perfect club, an 8-iron from about 178 with the right wind,” Moore said of the first ace of his career. “I just started in that bunker on the right and let the wind do its job and I got a lucky bounce. It looked like some kind of edge bounce. Yeah, we could see it off the tee, which is great too.”
The PGA Tour rookie was 3 under in his final nine holes despite a 4 bogey on the par 3 12th hole.
Scott Stallings and Zach Johnson were tied for sixth with 10 under, along with Irishman Seamus Power. Tom Hoge, Canada’s Corey Conners and England’s David Skinns were tied for ninth with 9 under.