Min Woo Lee finished Friday off in style and with it, he’s earned the pole position halfway through the tournament.
The Aussie drained a 60-footer for eagle at Royal Wellington Golf Club’s par-5 18th in the second round of the Asia-Pacific Amateur Championship to finish out a 3-under 68 and move ahead in the clubhouse by one at 7 under.
It was actually a birdie-birdie-eagle finish for Lee, who was as surprised as anyone in nailing the 60-footer.
“It has been a while since I’ve holed a putt that long,” Lee said. “It just happened at the right time.”
The 19-year-old is the younger brother of LPGA star Minjee Lee and the winner of the 2016 U.S. Junior Amateur. He missed out on a U.S. Open berth via that victory by a year, as the USGA announced a spot in the year’s second major for the U.S. Junior winner starting in 2017.
But as the Asia-Pacific Amateur annually awards its winner invites into the following year’s Masters and Open Championship, Lee is halfway to earning spots in two majors in 2018.
Lin Yuxin, of China, is solo second at 6 under. Shae Wools-Cobb, a fellow Aussie and Lee’s roommate this week, lost the lead as a second-round 74 pushed him back to 5 under. But he’s still just two back in solo third.
Andy Zhang, who plays for Florida, sits tied for fourth at 3 under. Sean Maruyama, son of former PGA Tour winner Shigeki Maruyama, is also T-4, as is Nick Voke (who recently finished out at Iowa State).
Cheng Jin, the 2015 champion, is tied for 39th at 4 over. Tianlang Guan, who famously won this event in 2012 and then made the cut at the following Masters at age 14, will miss the weekend.
The Chinese player fired rounds of 75 and 76 to miss the cut.