Austin Cook, a PGA Tour rookie, grabs 36-hole lead at RSM Classic

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Austin Cook, a PGA Tour rookie, grabs 36-hole lead at RSM Classic

PGA Tour

Austin Cook, a PGA Tour rookie, grabs 36-hole lead at RSM Classic

Here is a recap of the second round of the RSM Classic at the Seaside and Plantation courses at Sea Island Golf Club in St Simons Island, Ga.:

LEADING: A new day and an even lower round was needed for the outright lead.

A day after Chris Kirk opened in 63 (at Plantation) for the top spot at 9 under, Austin Cook fired an 8-under 62 at Seaside to move into the lead by one shot with a 14-under 128 total.

Cook, who’s bogey-free through 36 holes, birdied the par-4 ninth to finish off his second round – one in which he posted four straight birdies early on. Brian Gay had the lead in the clubhouse by four at 13 under before Cook swooped in ahead of him. The leader, a 26-year-old former Arkansas player, is most known to date for his stunning ability to get through Monday qualifiers a couple of years ago. Cook is a PGA Tour rookie after finishing 15th on the Web.com Tour money list in 2017. This is just his 14th career start on the PGA Tour, with his best finish being a tie for sixth at the 2015 Barbasol Championship.

His best showing in three starts this season is a tie for 20th at the Shriners Hospitals for Children Open, but he looks good so far to improve on that this week.

CHASING: Gay fired a 6-under 64 at Seaside to reach 13 under. Three are tied for third back at 9 under. Among those is C.T. Pan, who jumped 47 spots to that position after posting a 7-under 65 at Plantation. Kirk posted an even-par 70 at Seaside to drop two spots to there. Vaughn Taylor fired 66 at Seaside to also sit T-3.

SHOT OF THE DAY: Brandt Snedeker buries this LONG birdie putt at Plantation’s par-4 sixth.

QUOTABLE: “When you sit down and ask, ‘Dude, do you love the game?’ … the answer is yes.” – Bubba Watson, on his rough 2016-17 campaign in which he was “too distracted”

SHORT SHOTS: Snedeker, coming back from a lengthy break due to injury, posts a second straight 67 (this time a 5-under one at Plantation) to jump 22 spots to a tie for sixth at 8 under. … He’s there with Andrew Landry, a Razorbacks product like the leader. Landry fired a 6-under 64 at Seaside to rocket 44 spots to T-6. … Kelly Kraft posts 65 at Seaside to jump 38 spots to T-12 at 7 under. … Patton Kizzire, coming off his first PGA Tour win last week, is also T-12 at 7 under after a 3-under 69 at Plantation. … Watson appears to be back on track after moving on from the Volvik ball, as he posts 6-under 64 at Seaside to jump from T-73 to T-12. … Kevin Kisner, returning from a long break, uses a 4-under 68 at Plantation to find himself T-12 as well. … Braden Thornberry, the reigning NCAA individual champ and Haskins winner, fires a 6-under 64 at Seaside to rocket 72 spots to a tie for 23rd at 6 under. The Ole Miss player previously posted a T-4 in June at the FedEx St. Jude Classic. … Matt Kuchar moves up 40 spots to a tie for 33rd at 5 under thanks to a 4-under 68 at Plantation. … Rob Oppenheim jumps 85 spots to a tie for 50th at 4 under thanks to a 6-under 66 at Plantation. … Bill Haas misses the cut despite having his famous golfer dad on the bag. He finishes two off the number at 1 under. … Defending champion Mac Hughes also misses the cut after finishing the week at even par. … Tournament host Davis Love III is exiting early as well after a 3-over showing. … Andrew “Beef” Johnston goes 75-77 to finish 10 over – last among all competitors who completed 36 holes, More on a wild Friday for him coming…

UP NEXT: Golf Channel will air third-round coverage Saturday from 1:30-4:30 p.m. Eastern. Follow all the action on Golfweek.com and our Facebook and Twitter feeds.

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