Mediate keeps lead at Open

Rocco Mediate sank a 160-meter iron shot for an eagle on the

fourth hole en route to a 6-under 65 on Friday that increased his

lead in the Open to three strokes.

The 46-year-old Mediate, looking for his first PGA Tour victory

in eight years, made the eagle on the par-four hole a day after a

hole-in-one on the third. He had a 13-under 129 total on the

CordeValle Golf Club course.

Ryudi Imada (67) was second, and Dean Wilson (64) and David

Duval (65) followed at 9 under.

U.S. Ryder Cup player Rickie Fowler shot a 65 to join Tim Herron

(67), Will MacKenzie (68), Henrik Stenson (67) and Bo Van Pelt (68)

at 8 under.

Mediate had eagles in consecutive rounds for the first time

since 2001.

”It is just weird,” Mediate said. ”When that went in, I was

‘Really?’ I was pleased, but shocked.”

Mediate, for years troubled by back problems, was slightly on

edge because of his 7:20 a.m. tee time, concerned that he couldn’t

get loose in the cold.

”I was a little nervy to start because I was concerned the

morning might be chilly,” Mediate said. ”I don’t do well in the

cold. But it wasn’t too bad. I hit a couple of putts and got some


Mediate birdied four of his first 12 holes before his eagle,

which made up for a later bogey.

”That was my record by miles, 34 holes without a bogey,”

Mediate said. ”I was so disappointed, but how could I be that

angry? I wanted to go at least 36 holes. I actually tried to bogey

the ninth hole too.”

Mediate said he took a putting lesson from Lee Trevino in May,

and it has made a huge difference in his results.

”I spent four or five hours with him and learned so much about

moving the ball to the right,” Mediate said. ”It was priceless. I

didn’t want to leave. Him and I are the same; we’re nuts.”

Wilson said he took advantage of smoother greens, birdieing six

of eight holes at one point, recovering nicely from an early


”There is a lot of danger out there,” Wilson said. ”I need to

drive the ball well, get it on the fairway. The greens were nice

and smooth in the morning, versus yesterday when they were a little


Duval said he played consistently well in the second round.

”I wasn’t real close to a bogey,” he said. ”I felt like I hit

the ball pretty well. I had a few mistakes but I came here and have

gotten into a rhythm so far.”

Fowler birdied four of his final five holes to move into the top


”I drove the ball better,” Fowler said. ”Rocco set the pace

and I needed to stay with the pace. I did that.”

Defending champion Troy Matteson missed the cut, following his

opening 72 with a 76.