Leaney leads by four through 36 holes at PGA TOUR Champions Q-School Finals
December 04, 2019
By Staff, PGATOUR.COM
- December 04, 2019
- Stephen Leaney carded a 66 in the second round of the Final Stage of PGA TOUR Champions Q-School. (Steve Dykes/Getty Images)
SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. – Australian Stephen Leaney carded a 5-under 66 Wednesday and took a four-stroke lead midway through the Final Stage of PGA TOUR Champions Q-School. Leaney is 11 under through two rounds at TPC Scottsdale’s Champions Course, while three players are tied at 7 under: Paul Stankowski (Flower Mound, Texas), Frank Esposito (Old Bridge, New Jersey) and Todd Fischer (Livermore, California).
This is Leaney’s second trip to the Final Stage, as the 50-year-old finished T4 last year at TPC Tampa Bay and was one of five players to become fully exempt for the 2019 season. He finished T7 at the Boeing Classic, the best of his three top-10s this year, and he finished 56th on the money list with $316,089.
Among the trio at 7 under is Esposito, who medaled at Q-School Finals in 2014 and is making his sixth start in the Final Stage. He advanced to the Finals after carding four consecutive rounds of 70 and finishing third at the First Stage in Florida.
Stankowski celebrated his 50th birthday on Tuesday and he’s also part of the three-way tie for second. The two-time winner on the PGA TOUR bogeyed two of his first three holes Wednesday but recovered to shoot a 3-under 68. Both of Stankowski’s TOUR wins came in extra holes, including a playoff win over Brandel Chamblee at the 1996 BellSouth Classic. This week, Chamblee is also making his debut at PGA TOUR Champions Q-School, and he is T53 at 2 over after a second-round 75.
Ricardo Gonzalez (Rosario, Argentina) carded a 7-under 64, tied for the best round Wednesday, and improved from T43 to T5. Also tied for fifth at 6 under is Robert Karlsson (Charlotte, North Carolina).
Marcus Meloan (San Diego, California) was the medalist at the First Stage in Texas and he is T7 at 5 under, while Florida medalist Jarmo Sandelin (Sweden) and California medalist Thongchai Jaidee (Thailand) are both T14 at 4 under.