HILTON HEAD ISLAND, S.C. (AP) — Brandt Snedeker gets to play on at the rain-delayed RBC Heritage after the second-round wrapped up Saturday morning.
There were 17 golfers left on the course when the second round was suspended Friday evening because of darkness and impending rain. Then the cut was at 1-over par and Snedeker was among the group at 2-over after shooting 73-71 the first two days.
Yet the fifth-ranked golfer was among the additional 21 players who got in when Jesper Parnevik missed a 5-foot par putt on the 18th hole Saturday morning.
“Everybody in the field at +2, put your envelopes in my locker,” Parnevik said on his Twitter feed shortly after the round ended.
The miss meant 91 players made the cut, tying the most on the PGA Tour when it happened at the 1981 Travelers Championship. The huge third-round field means they’ll be another cut on Saturday before the final round.
Others squeaking into the field at 2-over included former Masters champion Zach Johnson and two-time RBC Heritage champion Boo Weekley. James Driscoll, a Massachusetts native, also at 2-over gets another chance to continue his “Birdies for Boston” effort of donating $1,000 per birdie he makes. He’s got seven birdies the first two rounds.
Snedeker and the others will have plenty of work left to catch co-leaders, Kevin Streelman, Charley Hoffman and Steve LeBrun, who sit 6-under par.
Luke Donald and Bill Haas are a stroke behind at 5 under.
One of the tournament’s biggest surprises was the poor play of Brandt Snedeker, the highest-ranked player in the field at Harbour Town Golf Links. Days after leading the Masters on Sunday before faltering, the 2011 RBC Heritage winner opened with a 73 and followed with a 71.
LeBrun’s safely on top for now, but it took him quite a while to gain his first 36-hole lead on the sport’s premier tour.
After graduating from Florida Atlantic in 2000, LeBrun played golf’s mini tours and Triple-A circuits until earning his PGA Tour card at qualifying school last fall. It has taken time, he said, to adjust to the harder courses and uptick in competition. LeBrun’s missed the cuts in five of his eight events on tour this year and hasn’t finished higher than 24th at the Puerto Rico Open last month.
“It feels good,” he said. “It’s one of those things I always knew I had the game to be out here and I plan on being in this position a lot of times,” he said.
LeBrun took last week off — he’s only played the Masters once, in 2004 — and didn’t lift a golf club, spending time with wife Jen and their daughters, 3-year-old Addison and 5-month-old Rose.
The time off the course refreshed him for his first trip to Harbour Town. As good as LeBrun feels so far, he’s kept things in perspective with two rounds remaining.
“You want to be in good position with nine holes left on Sunday,” LeBrun said. “That’s when you really want to be in good position.”
Streelman had three birdies in his first four holes. He added a final birdie on the par-5 15th and made par the rest of the way to move on top and put himself in contention on the tricky, narrow fairways and small greens.
Streelman’s life hasn’t changed much since the victory in Tampa Bay, just his approach to the game.
“I do feel a bit freer to be in the position I am, say, in a week like this,” he said. “Because I’m not worried about a top 10 or a top 5 or keep your card. And I can just go out and try and win a golf tournament.”
Hoffman, seeking his third PGA Tour victory and first since 2010, closed with birdies on his final two holes, the eighth and the ninth, to catch Streelman.
“It feels good to get the blood flowing a little bit and have a chance on Sunday,” he said. “Obviously, would like to make a bunch of birdies and pull away, but it usually doesn’t happen out here.”
The RBC Heritage featured 14 of the world’s top 29 in the field, including three in the top 10 — Snedeker, Donald (No. 6) and Matt Kuchar (No. 9) — during a week that’s generally a time for the game’s best to decompress after the Masters.
Masters champ Adam Scott, along with the world’s top two players in Tiger Woods and Rory McIlroy, are doing just that by skipping the tournament.
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