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The Roundup

The Roundup: Morning Glory

by Matt Cooper
Updated On: October 4, 2018, 4:04 pm ET

Recap of the day
 
Morning wave: Whee Kim thrashed five birdies and an eagle in his 7-under-par 65 to set the clubhouse target of 12-under 132 and there were low scores everywhere. Another 65 got Johnson Wagner to 11-under for the week and Byeong Hun An joined him after a 67. Zac Blair and Joaquin Niemann also made 67s to hit 10-under whilst Aaron Baddeley got there thanks to a 66. Late in the wave Keegan Bradley stamped a stunning birdie-eagle, birdie-eagle finish to complete a 63 and join Kim on 12-under. Seconds later Kevin Tway signed for another 65 to set a new clubhouse lead of 13-under 131 and Ben Silverman also carded 63 to rise over 100 places in the scoring. 
 
Afternoon wave: A lot harder work for the late starters. In fact the top five were unchanged by day's end. Pre-round leader Robert Garrigus is not out of it, but could only follow his 63 with a 72 for T9 on 9-under 135. In the circumstances, Dustin Johnson's 66 to join the pack tied sixth on 10-under, was very impressive. By day's end the AM wave averaged 70.28 while the PM wave was more than a stroke higher (71.36). 
 
Leaderboard: -13 Kevin Tway, -12 Whee Kim, Kevin Tway, -11 Byeong Hun An, Johnson Wagner
 
Notables: -9 Robert Garrigus, Ian Poulter, -7 Steve Stricker, Tommy Fleetwood, -5 Charley Hoffman
 
Low round of the day: The 63 which Bradley and Silverman produced.
 
Cut: -4 140
 
MCs: -3 Sergio Garcia, +2 Bubba Watson, +3 Brooks Koepka
 
Revised outright betting: D. Johnson 2/1, Tway 13/2, Bradley 15/2, An 10/1, Niemann 12/1, W. Kim 16/1
 
 
Saturday weather forecast
 
Temperatures in the mid 70s, the chance of a shower, but key is that gusts of up to 33mph are not out of the question.
 
 
Leaders at 36 holes
 
Kevin Tway (65, 131) - Gained 3.859 on the greens in a lap which included five par breakers from outside seven feet. Good 18th hole bounce back after bogey on 17.
 
Whee Kim (65, 132) - Opened on the back nine, birdied No. 13 and then went berserk round the turn starting with a 43'11" eagle at 16, a 33'0" birdie at 17, kick-in par breakers at 18 and 2, with a 13'0" red number in between at No. 1.
 
Keegan Bradley (63, 132) - Made an eagle and two birdies on the front nine, but topped that in style on the way home: drained 80'2" of putts in the final four holes to complete that birdie-eagle-birdie-eagle finale.
 
Byeong Hun An (67, 133) - Hitting it a long way from the tee box (averaging 320.3 yards through 36 holes) and landing a lot of greens (29 of 36). His 18th hole eagle-3 came from just 9'7".
 
Johnson Wagner (65, 133) - Found only half the fairways and half the greens in round two, but no matter. Drained eight putts from outside 7-feet.
 
 
Fate of the favorites
 
Dustin Johnson (66, 134) - Found 17 of 18 greens in regulation and took advantage in a bogey-free round. His four birdies and eagle all came from within 9 feet. 
 
Bubba Watson (74, 144) - Could only nine greens in regulation in his second lap and paid the cost with six bogeys. 
 
Brooks Koepka (70, 147) - He actually ended his week with nine straight pars, but before then it was chaos. His first lap had four sixes on the card and his opening nine  in the second round five birdies and three bogeys. In round one he landed only 35.71% of fairways and 44.44% of greens in regulation.
 
 
Quotes
 
Keegan Bradley (63, 132): "That was a wild finish. It turned kind of an average day out here into something really special. I have a chance this week." 
 
Kevin Tway (65, 131 on father Bob): "I talk to dad every day. We talk about every round. He can probably tell you what kind of shots I'm hitting just by like watching on TV. He knows what the swing looks like. He's been there throughout, so he's a big key for me."
 
Whee Kim (65, 132): "Just playing good, feeling good. Everything is great. It feels very positive, you know. I'm pretty much comfortable. Just expecting a really good weekend."
 
Byeong Hun An (67, 133): "I think this course suits my game. Obviously trying to get a win this week because this will be my last PGA TOUR event before the Playoffs, other than the majors."
 
Mackenzie Hughes (69, 138): "I would love to play every tournament of the year out here at the Abbey. I would take the home course advantage every time or the sort of local knowledge. I love coming back here. I've got good memories, and the crowds have been awesome."
 
Jhonattan Vegas (70, 139): "I haven't really felt like I've been doing a lot of good stuff other than making a few putts, which always helps around here, and of course you have to make a lot of birdies. My body is still not feeling great probably from all the traveling I did last week."
 
 
Road to victory at Glen Abbey
 
2017 Jhonattan Vegas – R1: 6th, R2: 10th, R3: 5th
2016 Jhonattan Vegas – R1: 55th, R2: 21st, R3: 15th
2015 Jason Day – R1: 17th, R2: 5th, R3: 2nd
2013 Brandt Snedeker – R1: 29th, R2: 16th, R3: 1st
2009 Nathan Green – R1: 20th, R2: 4th, R3 4th
 
Notes: In all three of the last four winners on the course were T10 or worse at halfway, however eight of the last 11 champions were T7 or better.
 
 
Fate of the halfway leaders at Glen Abbey - where did they finish?
 
2017 - Martin Flores - 19th
2016 - Dustin Johnson - 2nd, Luke List - 14th
2015 - Chad Campbell - 11th
2013 - Hunter Mahan - WD
2009 - Jason Dufner - 3rd
 
Notes: So in recent years this has not been a good track for halfway leaders. In the 21st century (nine events) only Chez Reavie converted (he shared the lead after every round and won in a play-off in 2008). 
 
 
Focus on - Kevin Tway
 
If Tway can remain in contention keep an eye on him in the final round. Why so? Well he's ticked three top tens in his last seven starts and he's done that despite making a move in the right direction only once in six Saturdays in that spell. For the T9 that kicked the run off in the Byron Nelson he remained stuck on T7 after Saturday's play (not so bad), a week later he slipped from T6 to T9 in the Forth Worth (again not too bad, he was ultimately T5), whilst when T6 in the Travelers his Saturday move was T17 to T15. Otherwise he pegged 74, 77 and 71 to head backwards. But the reason him hanging around matters? His final rounds in this spell are strong: 67-67-72-65-70-66. If he gives himself a chance he's taking it.
 
 
Focus on - Whee Kim
 
The Korean was a mere 4-for-15 for the calendar year after the Memorial Tournament, at which point he headed home for a break. He lacked even one top 20 in that run, but there had been a hint of form when he lay T7 after 54 holes at Muirfield Village. He backed it up with victory seven days later on the Korean Tour and since there have been more, admittedly well-hidden, clues of form. He opened 62-68 to be T5 at halfway in The Greenbrier, a first round 65 had him T7 at the John Deere (eventually T16) and he's now off to a flier here. Victory this week would be the third by a Korean-born player in four weeks (after Kevin Na and Michael Kim).