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June 23 2012

2:30 PM

Holmes goes low, is in contention

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J.B. Holmes finished off an 8-under 62 Saturday morning at TPC River Highlands.

By Brian Wacker, PGATOUR.COM

CROMWELL, Conn. -- J.B. Holmes’ story keeps getting better.

So do the results.

A little more than nine months after undergoing brain surgery to relieve the symptoms of Chiari malformations at the base of his brain (structural defects in the part of the brain that controls balance and can cause problems related to headaches, coordination, dizziness and vision), Holmes is in contention at the Travelers Championship following a 62 in the second round.

“I've hit it well every day,” said Holmes, who has his swing coach Matt Killeen on his bag. “I'm just happy to be out here and glad I'm playing here.”

Holmes was 4 under through his first eight holes when play was suspended Friday at TPC River Highlands. When it resumed Saturday morning, Holmes hit a wedge to 3 feet to set up an easy birdie to make the turn in 30.

He kept the momentum going on the back nine with three more birdies in a four-hole stretch.

Holmes missed just three greens in the second round and took only 25 putts. His 62 was two strokes off matching the course record, and he’s 8 under and near the top of the leaderboard through his first two rounds ( click here to replay his round ).

“[The soft conditions] made it where you could really go at the pins,” Holmes said. “I didn't have to worry about it bouncing off to the right, or if you short side yourself it's not quite as difficult to get up-and-down.”

Five times this season, Holmes has finished in the top 25 -- two of those have come in his last two starts with a tie for 19th at the FedEx St. Jude Classic and a tie for 13th at the Memorial tournament presented by Nationwide Insurance.

“I hit the ball really well, especially in the last five or six rounds,” said Holmes, whose last victory came at the 2008 FBR Open. “I kind of felt it coming on a little bit. I feel like I'm 100 percent and swinging at it good.”

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