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Golf Roundup

Driscoll in hunt again

Drummond takes Senior PGA lead

Associated Press / May 23, 2009
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Losing in a playoff at the Valero Texas Open last week was disappointing, but James Driscoll of Brookline was already looking ahead to this week, when he'd have a chance to play in consecutive tournaments and build some momentum at the Byron Nelson Championship.

He's taken full advantage of his opportunity, shooting a 4-under 66 yesterday to trail co-leaders Rory Sabbatini and John Mallinger by one shot after two rounds in Irving, Texas. Driscoll, who shot 62 in the final round of the Texas Open but lost to Zach Johnson on the first playoff hole, had the lead until finishing with consecutive bogeys, three-putting the 198-yard 17th and missing the fairway at No. 18.

"It stinks to end like that, but I did a lot of things great out there, too," said Driscoll, who has a two-round total of 7-under 133. "So it's what I'm going to focus on."

Mallinger eagled both par-5 holes at the TPC Four Seasons, holing a 45-foot shot from the greenside bunker at No. 7 and sinking a 14-foot putt at No. 16. He also had three bogeys and four birdies, the last a 15-footer at No. 18 for a share of the lead.

Sabbatini made four consecutive birdies after a most unconventional par. "My par on No. 3 was better than any of the birdies," Sabbatini said. "I drove it in the water, then hit a 5-iron in the right greenside bunker, then holed it. Just a regulation par."

That 96-foot par-saving bunker blast at the 528-yard third hole, his 12th of the day, and the birdie quartet came in his season-low round of 6-under 64.

First-round co-leader James Nitties (68) overcame a double bogey when he hit his first tee shot out of bounds. Nitties, a PGA Tour rookie, was in the group at 7 under that included Driscoll, Brian Davis (65), who finished his sixth consecutive round in the 60s, Briny Baird (64), and Dustin Johnson (65).

Champions - Scotland's Ross Drummond, more famous as the subject of a golf book than for his play, matched the low round with a 4-under 66 to take a two-stroke lead after the second round of the Senior PGA Championship in Beachwood, Ohio.

Drummond, 52, whose life on the fringes of fame and fortune were told in the 1996 book "Four Iron in the Soul," had a 4-under 136 total. Tom Purtzer, whose 66 tied him for the first-round lead with Scott Hoch, faded to a 72 and was two shots back along with Hoch. Also at 138 were Jeff Sluman (68), Larry Mize (69), and Bernhard Langer (70).

No European player has won the Senior PGA since Jock Hutchison - also a Scot - in 1947.

LPGA - Karine Icher of France shot a 6-under 66 to take a two-shot lead over Hee Won Han of South Korea after two rounds at the Corning (N.Y.) Classic.

Icher, the first-round co-leader at 8 under with Hee Young Park of South Korea, broke the 36-hole record for the tournament by one shot and equaled the best back-to-back rounds in Corning history. Park (73) was seven shots back.

Seon Hwa Lee (67), Soo Yun Kang (69), and Na Yeon Choi (68) of South Korea were tied for third at 10 under with Mikaela Parmlid of Sweden (67), Sandra Gal (69) of Germany, and Sarah Kemp (68) of Australia.

European - Paul Casey shot a 5-under 67 for a two-stroke lead midway through the BMW PGA Championship in Virginia Water, England.

Casey was at 8-under 136 after two rounds. Defending champion Miguel Angel Jimenez (70), David Horsey (71), Anthony Wall (71), and Soren Kjeldsen (69) were next. Ben Curtis was among three players another stroke back.

Colin Montgomerie and Rory McIlroy were in a group at 2 under. Jose Maria Olazabal, voted into the World Hall of Fame this week, birdied his last two holes for a 70 and joined John Daly (71) at 144.