Cal Golf: PGA Champion Collin Morikawa Misses the Cut at the U.S. Open

Photo by Danielle Parhizkaran, USA Today

Jeff Faraudo

Winged Foot Golf Course got its revenge on the field of the 120th U.S. Open on Friday, and not even an improved second day by Collin Morikawa could keep the former Cal star alive in the year’s second major.

Morikawa was among the minority who actually fared better on Day 2 than on Thursday. But his 1-over score of 71 left him at 7-over for two days and he missed the cut by one stroke, finishing in a tie for 64th place.

The course at Mamaroneck, N.Y., famed for its difficulty, wasn’t so imposing on Thursday, when 22 golfers broke par. By the end of play on Friday, at the tournament's halfway point, only six still were under par.

Patrick Reed is the second-round leader at 4-under after shooting an even-par 70. Bryson DeChambeau is in second place at 3-under after firing a 68 that was the best Friday score of anyone in the top-10.

Morikawa, 23, who won the PGA Championship last month, doomed his chances in this one after shooting a 76 in the opening round.

On Friday, he started on the back nine and was 2-under for the day after eight holes. That put him at minus-4 for the tournament and in position to make the cut.

But after making the turn back to the front nine, he double-bogeyed No. 2 and entered the second-to-last hole clinging to a qualifying spot at plus-6. That changed when he bogeyed the par-4 eighth hole, and his two-day score of 147 left him one stroke shy of the group of 63 who advanced to play on Saturday.

Rex Hoggard of the Golf Channel identified Morikawa as the biggest disappointment of the tournament’s first two days:

As the year’s only major championship winner, maybe the expectations were a bit too high for the 23-year-old, but following his sixth-place finish two weeks ago at the Tour Championship, he seemed poised for another breakthrough. Instead, he struggled to an opening 76 to quickly fall out of contention and wound up missing the cut by a shot.

One-time Cal player Byeong Hun An also finished in that logjam at 7-over after posting six bogeys for a Friday score of 76. He completed the first round at 71.

And Cal’s third entry in the field, former NCAA champion Max Homa, was sidelined after shooting an 6-over 76 on Friday for a two-day score of 154. Homa had six bogeys and a double-bogey in the second round.

Winged Foot rose up and became the tough course everyone expected on Friday.

Many of the game’s biggest names were taken down Friday:

— Three-time U.S. Open champ Tiger Woods, who shot 73 on Thursday, followed with a 77 that included five bogeys and a pair of double-bogeys. He finished at 10 over.

"On this golf course it's imperative that you hit fairways, and I did not do that," Woods said. "The whole goal of entering an event is to win, and when I don't give myself that opportunity over the weekend, it doesn't feel good."

— Phil Mickelson, 50, in perhaps his final shot at winning the U.S. after six career runner-up finishes, wasn’t close. He shot a first-round 79, then posted a 74 and missed the cut at 13-over.

“I’m a little disappointed because I’d prepared and worked hard and felt ready, and I got out here, after playing some really good golf the last few months at home, I get out here and I play some of my worst,” Mickelson told Golf Channel.

This marks the first time in 21 years that both Woods and Mickelson missed the cut at the Open in the same year.

— Jordan Spieth and Sergio Garcia each shot 81s on Friday. Spieth was shelved with a two-day score of 14-over and Garcia was out at 15-over.

The toughest day on the course belonged to Sung King, a 33-year-old Korean, whose round of 86 included six bogeys and five double-bogeys. But even he didn’t finish last — that spot went to Spanish amateur Eduard Rousaud, who wound up 21-over par for two days.



Follow Jeff Faraudo of Cal Sports Report on Twitter: @jefffaraudo

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