DORAL, Fla. – The new Doral in raging wind looked a lot like an old U.S. Open on Friday.
Matt Kuchar played out of the rough to tap-in range for a birdie on the 18th hole for a 2-over-par 74 that allowed him to join an exclusive group at the Cadillac Championship — one of only four survivors to par after 36 holes of the World Golf Championships event.
The Blue Monster gobbled up just about everyone else.
Dustin Johnson (74) bogeyed three of his last six holes. Patrick Reed (75) made two birdies in his round. Hunter Mahan (74) atoned for a triple bogey with a 4-iron into 5 feet for an eagle on the eighth hole. They joined Kuchar atop the leaderboard at 1-under 143.
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“I felt stressed all day, because I knew every shot had ‘big penalty’ written all over it,” Mahan said. “It was a really tough day. There wasn’t an easy shot out there.”
Three players broke par in the second round. No one shot in the 60s. The average score was a fraction under 76 and 113 balls landed in the water on a course that got a makeover in the past 12 months after billionaire Donald Trump purchased the resort.
“I don’t think I’ve played in conditions this difficult in the U.S.,” Graeme McDowell (71) of Northern Ireland said. He was at even-par 144 along with Rory McIlroy (74), Francesco Molinari (75) and Jamie Donaldson (70).
Top-ranked Tiger Woods (73) was in a group of players tied for 25th place at 5 over along with Ryan Moore (79) of Puyallup and Phil Mickelson (75).
Woods, who made a birdie putt from 91 feet, 7 inches on the par-3 fourth, was asked which hole at Doral is the most challenging.
“One through 18 right now,” he replied. “For me, yes. I don’t know about the other players, but I found all of them pretty hard out there today.”
• James Driscoll shot a 9-under 63 to take the lead after two rounds of the Puerto Rico Open, a PGA Tour event in Rio Grande.
Driscoll was at 12-under 132, one stroke ahead of Chesson Hadley (65). Former Washington Husky Richard H. Lee (68) was tied for 16th place at 7 under.
Players with scores of even-par 144 or worse for 36 holes missed the cut, a group that included ex-Husky Alex Prugh (74-71—145) of Spokane and Michael Putnam (77-73—150), who is from University Place.
• Byron Smith (6-under 66) leads the Chile Classic, a Web.com Tour event in Santiago, at 13-under 131 after two rounds.
Andres Gonzales (68) of Olympia was tied for 14th place at 7 under.