RALEIGH, N.C. – Ethan Tracy played steady and stayed in the red at the 2017 Rex Hospital Open on Friday.
As a result, Tracy topped the leaderboard and stood as the clubhouse leader following second-round play at TPC Wakefield Plantation.
Tracy’s 4-under par 67 put him at -9 overall, and one stroke ahead of Kyoung-Hoon Lee, Miguel Angel Carballo, and Derek Ernst.
“I’ve been wedging it really great,” Tracy said.
“I’m playing to the strengths of my game right now. It’s working well, making a lot of good putts. Putter’s feeling great, wedges are doing really good – just keep on doing that and I think I’ll be in contention.”
While Lee’s and Ernst’s 3-under par finishes maintained their steady rise up the leaderboard following opening-round 66s, Carballo’s 7-under par was the low round of the day and put him in the same spot.
Starting on the back nine, opening-round leader Chesson Hadley struggled after making a birdie on the par-4 10th.
Though adding another birdie on the par- 4 14th between two bogeys, Hadley struggled to hit the 17th and 18th greens in regulation and bogeyed each and made the turn at 2-over par.
A bogey-free back nine with one birdie left Hadley at 1-over and -6 overall – sitting T9 with six others.
“It certainly was not my best,” Hadley said.
“The course was playing hard, harder than it was yesterday. I didn’t drive the ball very well. I feel like I hit a couple of great iron shots, but for the most part I thought it was just kinda’ poopy. I didn’t make many putts either. To shoot 1-over is honestly not too bad.”
Notables: Raleigh native Carter Jenkins, having turned pro last year after his junior year at UNC, and playing on a sponsor exemption, made the cut (-1) after carding a 2-under par 69 finish on the day…Trailing Carballo with low rounds on the day were Rick Lamb and Rick Cochran III who both carded 6-under par 65s to sit tied for 16th spot…After dropping six birdies on his back nine, Wade Binfield held the overall lead, playing at -7 for the day, but a four-putt on his final hole, the par-5 ninth, dropped him to T5 overall…Local college alums Albin Choi (N.C. State), and Wes Roach (Duke) missed the cut at even-par, in addition to Brad Fritsch (Campbell) who missed it at 2-over.
Updated: 7:45 p.m.