3M Championship: Second-round notebookJuly 19, 2008
Phil Stambaugh, PGA TOUR Staff
BLAINE, Minn. -- R.W. Eaks' 16-under-par 128 total through 36 holes establishes a new two-day tournament record. Last year's winner, D.A. Weibring, was co-holder of the old record along with Ed Dougherty. Weibring was 13-under-par 131 through 36 holes last year and in 2000 at Bunker Hills, Ed Dougherty was 13-under 131 through two rounds.
Inside the Numbers 36-Hole Leaderboard Player Score 1. R.W. Eaks 128 -16 T2. Loren Roberts 131 -13 T2. Gene Jones 131 -13 4. Dana Quigley 132 -12 5. Bernhard Langer 133 -11 T6. Ron Streck 134 -10 T6. Hale Irwin 134 -10 T6. Lonnie Nielsen 134 -10 T6. Gary Hallberg 134 -10 T10. Scott Hoch 135 -9 T10. Tim Simpson 135 -9 T10. David Edwards 135 -9 T10. Bruce Vaughan 135 -9 T10. Peter Jacobsen 135 -9
• R.W. Eaks' score this week also establishes the best 36-hole total on the Champions Tour this year. At the 2008 MasterCard Championship at Hualalai, Allen Doyle shot 63-66?129 (15 under) for two rounds, but eventually finished second to Fred Funk in the season-opening event in Hawaii.
• R.W. Eaks' previous lowest 36-hole scores in his Champions Tour career were a 15-under 129 at the 2007 Greater Hickory Classic at Rock Barn (Win), an 11-under 131 at the 2007 Toshiba Classic (finished second), an 11-under 133 at the 2007 Dick's Sporting Goods Open (won), and an 11-under 133 at the 2005 SAS Championship (tied for 10th).
• R.W. Eaks' 9-under 63 Saturday was his low round of the year and matches the best second-round score in 3M Championship history. Don Pooley shot 63 on Saturday at the 2003 event. Eaks' three-stroke lead matches the largest 36-hole lead in event history. Both Tom Purtzer (2005) and Curtis Strange (2006) led by three strokes after 36 holes of this event.
• R.W. Eaks will be playing in the final grouping for the first time since the 2007 Greater Hickory Classic at Rock Barn. He eventually went on to win that event. Loren Roberts will be in the final grouping for the third consecutive event and fourth time overall in 2008. Gene Jones, an open qualifier on Monday, will be in the final grouping for the first time in his Champions Tour career.
• R.W. Eaks is two for three on the Champions Tour when leading/co-leading heading into the final round. Last fall, he led Rod Spittle by three strokes going into the last round of the Greater Hickory Classic at Rock Barn and went on to win by two. Earlier in the 2007 season at the Dick's Sporting Goods Open, R.W. Eaks held a one-stroke lead through 36 holes and went on to win his first Champions Tour event by three shots over Bruce Vaughan after carding a final-round 66 at En Joie Golf Club. In 2005 at the SAS Championship in Raleigh, Eaks led Bob Gilder by one stroke after two rounds, but carded a final-round 77 at Prestonwood Country Club and ended up T10.
• Ron Streck's 8-under 64 Saturday was his low round on the Champions Tour since he fired a 62 on Friday at the 2005 Commerce Bank Championship. Streck went on to win that event, becoming the first player to win events on the PGA TOUR, Nationwide Tour and Champions Tour.
• Loren Roberts' 7-under 65 Saturday gives him nine straight sub-70 rounds on the Champions Tour, a 2008 best. Roberts, a winner in his last start on the circuit at the Commerce Bank Championship, is bidding to win consecutive events for the first time since the 2005 season when he started the year winning three straight tournaments.
• Sunday's 3M Championship winner will earn 263 Charles Schwab Cup points in addition to a check for $262,500. Jay Haas currently leads the Schwab Cup race by 258 points over Bernhard Langer and Scott Hoch is third, 645 points back. Loren Roberts, last year's Schwab Cup winner, is currently in fourth position and can close the gap with a high finish tomorrow. Roberts trails Haas by 668 points. At the end of the official season, the player with the most Schwab Cup points will earn a $1 million annuity. Points are earned throughout the year on a per-thousand basis for top-10 finishes only.
• In the first 17 Champions Tour events this year, seven second-round leaders/co-leaders have gone on to win. Eduardo Romero of Argentina was the last to do so at the Dick's Sporting Goods Open in New York two weeks ago. Over the last 15 years of the 3M Championship, players leading or co-leading after Saturday's round have won nine times, including seven of the last 11 years in Minnesota.
• David Edwards, the 2006 3M Championship winner, is the only professional who has been bogey free through 36 holes of this year's event.
• Saturday's suspension of play was the first delay at this event since the tournament moved to the TPC Twin Cities in 2001.
• The TPC Twin Cities course played to a stroke average of 70.103 Saturday compared to 69.949 yesterday. Overall, there were 33 rounds in the 60s Saturday compared to 39 sub-70 scores on Friday. Through 36 holes, the cumulative scoring average this year is 70.026 vs. 70.942 in 2007 and 71.86 in 2006.
• Ed Dougherty and Hale Irwin have hit 27 of 28 fairways through the first 36 holes. ... Keith Fergus, Tim Simpson and Mike Goodes have hit 33 of 36 greens in regulation. ... Last year after 36 holes of the 3M Championship, Goodes led the Greens In Regulation stat category, hitting 33 of 36 greens. ... Boonchu Ruangkit of Thailand leads the Putting stat category, averaging 1.429 per green. ... Gil Morgan has averaged 315.3 yards off the tee through 36 holes.