SILVIS, Ill. – Zach Johnson and William McGirt were at 12-under-par 130 and tied for the lead at the halfway point of the John Deere Classic.
They were a stroke ahead of Steven Bowditch, Johnson Wagner and Brian Harman.
Three-time Deere winner Steve Stricker shot a 65 Friday for a 133 total to vault into contention at the par-71 TPC Deere Run, and was tied for sixth with Rory Sabbatini, Ryan Moore and Todd Hamilton.
Johnson, the Deere winner in 2012, shot a 4-under 67 in the afternoon despite two bogeys in his last four holes. That dropped him into a tie with McGirt.
McGirt, 35, is looking for his first PGA Tour victory.
He added a 66 to his opening 64, but like Johnson, he finished with a bogey. McGirt’s best finish this year is a tie for sixth in the Northern Trust Open at Riviera. Since then, he’s had one top 10 and has missed the cut in seven of 14 tournaments.
McGirt is winless on the PGA Tour in 111 starts, most of them in the last four years. His best finishes are a pair of ties for second in the Canadian Open, in 2012 and 2013.
Asked how he’d gotten to 12 under and the lead on Friday, he said, I couldn’t tell you what happened.
Four birdies in a row and seven in a stretch of nine holes happened.
One thing McGirt hasn’t been doing well recently is sinking putts, but he’s needed only 24 in each of the first two rounds.
For some reason I’m able to see the line this week, McGirt said. I feel I’ve putted better the last few weeks and haven’t holed anything.
EUROPEAN: In Aberdeen, Scotland, Rory McIlroy surrendered the lead at the Scottish Open with a second-round meltdown, leaving three players tied for first place on a day when brutal winds played havoc with the field.
Kristoffer Broberg of Sweden, Argentina’s Ricardo Gonzalez and Marc Warren of Scotland were atop the leader board at 6 under on the par-71 Royal Aberdeen links course.
McIlroy shot a course-record 64 in the first round but followed it up with a 78. Justin Rose signed for a 68 and is alone in fourth place, a shot behind. Defending champion Phil Mickelson is 1 under after a 73.
U.S. SENIOR OPEN: In Edmond, Oklahoma, Colin Montgomerie remained in front after the second day of action at the U.S. Senior Open.
The Scotsman had an even-par 71 and is 6 under for the tournament, good for a one-stroke lead over Scott Dunlap.
Bernhard Langer took sole possession of the lead with a birdie on 14 but netted bogeys on 15, 16 and 18 to finish tied for third at 4 under. He is tied with Gene Sauers, who shot 69 on both the first two days.
Quinn Griffing, a teaching pro at Donald Ross in Fort Wayne, shot a 8-over 79 for a 160 total. He missed the cut.