GREENVILLE, S.C. -- David Mathis continued his birdie assault at the BMW Charity Pro-Am, shooting a 7-under-par 65 at Bright's Creek Golf Club to grab a two-shot lead at the tournament's halfway point. Mathis is at 14 under after 36 holes of the event, which has Nationwide Tour professionals playing with celebrities and amateurs in a better-ball format.
|Inside the Numbers|
|Mathis thru 36 Holes|
The tournament is spread out over three courses in the Greenville-Spartanburg area and Mathis will finish his rotation at the tournament's host course, the Thornblade Club, on Saturday. Sunday's final round will also be at Thornblade.
Matt Weibring, the 54-hole leader last week at the Fort Smith Classic, is at 12 under after birdies on the final three holes and a 7-under-par 65 at Carolina Country Club.
Clemson grad Matt Hendrix posted a 4-under 68 at Bright's Creek, the event's third course, and is at 11 under par to hold down third place. Greg Chalmers has carded back-to-back 67s and is alone in fourth place at 10 under.
Mathis ran off a string of six consecutive birdies during his opening round at Carolina CC and followed that up with a bogey-free effort at the mountainous Bright's Creek layout that stretches 728 yards longer than Carolina Country Club.
"I hit some great tee shots out here. It seems that's the key," said Mathis, who hit 9 of 14 fairways. "On certain holes, you've just got 'man up' and hit a good one."
Mathis has been even better with his iron play, hitting 15 greens in regulation during the opening round and 17 in Friday's second.
"I didn't strike the ball as well as I did yesterday, but I hit my wedges really close," said Mathis, who canned five birdie putts that totaled only 16 feet and one other that measured 18 feet. "My goal is to win but I've got to take it one shot at a time because you can't get ahead of yourself out here. We all want to be in 'The 25' at the end of the year; that's what we're playing for."
The top 25 money winners at the end of the season will move on to the PGA TOUR in 2009. Mathis has four consecutive top-25 finishes and is currently No. 44 on the money list.
Weibring, playing with Texas musician Pat Green, is in contention for the second straight week.
"I putted really, really good. This game is always a lot more fun when you're putting well," said Weibring. "I couldn't have a better playing partner than Pat. We've been friends a long time. He's always the first to call me when I'm playing good or when I need some encouragement. He puts me at ease on the golf course."
Hockey great Wayne Gretzky and his pro partner Chris Nallen continue to hold the lead in the team competition. The pair has posted back-to-back 59s and stands at 25 under par after two days. Their lead is two strokes over pro Nick Malinowski and actor Jason Dohring, who played Logan Echolls on the televison show "Veronica Mars."
Colt Knost, winner of the Fort Smith Classic last week, and his partner, musician Javier Colon, are in third place at 21 under par. Knost has posted individual scores of 76-72 and is tied for 146th place.
Hendrix leads the list of local favorites in contention and will get a shot at his home course, Thornblade, in round three.
"It's nice to be able to stay at home because it takes your mind off of golf," said Hendrix, who played on the PGA TOUR last year but lost his card after making only seven cuts in 24 starts and finishing No. 213 on the money list. "My sole purpose has been to stay relaxed and play how I always do. It's stressful (not having a Tour card) but it makes me want it that much more."
Chalmers, winner of the Henrico County Open last month, posted his 67 at Bright's Creek, a course he didn't play a practice round on.
"I never played this one, only drove around it," said the Tour's No. 3 money winner thus far. "What I like about these courses is that if you drive it in play, not long, but just in play, you'll have opportunities. The key is to not wear yourself out before Thursday because you're trying to be in contention on Sunday."
Second-Round Notes: There is no 36-hole cut this week. The cut will come after 54 holes, allowing each team to play one round on the three tournament courses. ... Following Saturday's round, the top 60 players (and ties) will advance to Sunday's final round. The top 14 teams (no ties) will also play on Sunday at the Thornblade Club. ... Forgive Bradley Hughes if he was distracted during the second round. Hughes' wife Kelly gave birth to their first child at 9:33 p.m. Thursday. The couple lives in Simpsonville, S.C., about 20 minutes from the host course, Thornblade Club. Hughes shot a 4-under 68 at Carolina Country Club and is 4 under for the tournament, tied for 55th place.