Sports

RESULTS, Second Round, Mitsubishi Electric Championship at Hualalai

January 19, 2019, 8:47 AM HST
* Updated January 20, 7:36 AM
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Mitsubishi Electric Championship at Hualalai
Hualalai Golf Course | Ka’upulehu-Kona, Hawai’i | Jan. 14–19, 2018
Second-Round
Friday, Jan. 18, 2019
Course Setup: Par 72 / 7,107 yards
Weather: A cold front stalling out over the Big Island in the morning allowed for cloud coverage, along with a small risk for showers. Winds increase from the north in the afternoon with gusts up to 20 MPH.
Purse: $1,800,000 (Winner: $305,000)
                                                                                          
Rank
Player
To Par
Scores
T1.
David Toms
-14
32-33 – 65
T2.
Tom Lehman
-10
32-33 – 65
T2.
Joe Durant
-10
35-34 – 69
T4.
Jerry Kelly
-9
32-32 – 64
T4.
Bernhard Langer
-9
32-33 – 65
T4.
Colin Montgomerie
-9
34-32 – 66
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David Toms, 65-65—130 (-14)

David Toms, who made his PGA TOUR Champions debut at the 2017 Mitsubishi Electric Championship at Hualalai, followed up an opening-round 65 with a second-round 65 on Friday to post 14-under 130, good for a four-shot lead entering Saturday’s final round at Hualalai Golf Course. His 130 total is three shy of the event’s all-time record, shared by Don Pooley (2006) and Russ Cochran (2011).
Toms’ four-shot lead through 36 holes is one shy of the tournament’s all-time record, shared by Bruce Crampton (1991) and Tom Kite (2002).

Toms, who earned his start in the event via his win at the 2018 U.S. Senior Open, is looking to become the first reigning U.S. Senior Open champion to win the Mitsubishi Electric Championship at Hualalai since Jack Nicklaus did so in 1994.

Toms’ record at Hualalai has been stellar in two prior starts, notching a T4 in his debut in 2017, followed by a solo-third-place effort in 2018. Kirk Triplett is the only other player to notch top-five finishes in each of the last two years at the season-opening event.

This marks just the second time that Toms has held a 36-hole lead on PGA TOUR Champions. At the 2017 Invesco QQQ Championship, the former LSU star opened with rounds of 66-72—138 for a share of the overnight lead before a final-round 69 left him in solo-third for the week. Toms held 13 36-hole leads/co-leads during his PGA TOUR career, and 12 54-hole leads/co-leads – converting seven of the latter to victory, with the most recent being the 2006 Sony Open in Hawaii.

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Tom Lehman, 69-65—134 (-10)
Tom Lehman birdied his first four holes on day two en route to a 7-under 65 to move into a tie for second place at 10-under 134, four shots back of Toms. The 65 was one off of Lehman’s career-low round of 64 at Hualalai, recorded in the final round of the 2011 event. It marked his fifth career round of 65 at the tournament.

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In eight career starts at the Mitsubishi Electric Championship at Hualalai, Lehman has six top-10 finishes, including runner-up efforts in 2011 and 2016.

During his PGA TOUR career, Lehman missed the cut in his first three attempts at the Sony Open in Hawai‘i, but thereafter, notched seven top-10 finishes in 17 ensuing starts, including runner-up finishes in 1995 and 2001.

Jerry Kelly, 71-64—135 (-9)
Mitsubishi Electric Championship at Hualalai defending champion Jerry Kelly’s second-round 64 was the lowest score of the day among the 42-man field.
The Wisconsin native recorded six birdies and an eagle on No. 4, which until late in the afternoon was ranked the toughest hole on course. Eventually it was overtaken by the par-3 17th where Kelly made par.

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Although he did not record any additional wins after his victory last year at Hualalai, Kelly still went on to rank 4th on the season’s money list after recording six top-5 finishes in addition to eleven top-10’s over the course of his 24 total starts.

Bernhard Langer, 135 (-9)
Climbing his way up the leaderboard to T4, Bernhard Langer improved his first-round score by five strokes with a second-round 65. He posted eight birdies before his lone bogey of the round came on No. 16.

The World Golf Hall of Fame member is eyeing a fourth career Mitsubishi Electric Championship title on Saturday. Langer has won 38 times on PGA TOUR Champions, and up until last season he had never won a single tournament more than three times until capturing his fourth win at the 2018 Insperity Invitational:

  • 2007, 2008, 2014, 2018 Insperity Invitational
  • 2011, 2013, 2016 Chubb Classic
  • 2014, 2015, 2016 Constellation SENIOR PLAYERS Champions
  • 2009, 2014, 2017 Mitsubishi Electric Championship at Hualalai
  • 2010, 2014, 2017 Senior Open Championship

Langer’s second-round 65 marked his 28th career round in the 60s at Hualalai Golf Course out of 34 total rounds. He is the tournament’s all-time leading money winner with $1,451,450.

Langer will be paired in Saturday’s final round alongside fellow World Golf Hall of Fame member Colin Montgomerie. The two combined to go 41-24-13 in their combined 18 Ryder Cup appearances representing Europe.

Other Tournament Notes:

Tom Watson, 69, posted a 5-under 67 on Friday to shoot his age or better for the 10th time in his PGA TOUR Champions career, and for the third time at the Mitsubishi Electric Championship at Hualalai (68, 2018; 65, 2016). The World Golf Hall of Fame member accomplished the feat three times last season.

The toughest hole of the round was the par-3 17th, where zero birdies were recorded in the 42-man field for an average of 3.262. Conversely, the easiest hole was the par-5 fourth with a scoring average of 4.214 and 23 birdies made throughout the round.

Fred Couples overcame an opening-round 72 with a second-round 66 on Friday to move 17 spots up the leaderboard into a tie for 13th. Entering the day, the World Golf Hall of Fame member had recorded second-round scores of par or worse in his last five PGA TOUR Champions starts.
In the 35-year history of the Mitsubishi Electric Championship at Hualalai, the player(s) who are leading or tied for the lead after 36 holes have gone on to win the tournament 25 times, including each of the last five years: Jerry Kelly (2018), Bernhard Langer (2017, 2014), Duffy Waldorf (2016) and Miguel Angel Jimenez (2015).

Over the last 13 years, the tournament winner has come from the final pairing 12 times. The exception during this stretch was John Cook in 2011 (second-to-last pairing).

In nine career starts at the Mitsubishi Electric Championship at Hualalai, Couples has three runner-up finishes and one solo-third-place effort. With $982,500 in career earnings at the event, he is the highest-ranked player on the tournament’s all-time money list without a victory (fifth). The only players ahead of him are Bernhard Langer, Hale Irwin, Tom Watson and Dana Quigley.

Entering Saturday’s final round at Hualalai, there are two players within four shots of the lead. The largest come-from-behind win in this tournament came in 2005 when Dana Quigley rallied from four strokes back to defeat 36-hole leader Tom Watson in a playoff. Quigley won the tournament with a par on the third extra hole.

There have been four playoffs in tournament history: 1987 (Don January def. Butch Baird), 1995 (Jim Colbert def. Jim Albus), 2005 (Dana Quigley def. Tom Watson) and 2013 (John Cook def. David Frost).

A win at this event has been instrumental over the years in earning a berth in the top 30 on the final money list. Jack Nicklaus (1994) and Miguel Angel Jimenez (2015) are the only past champions who didn’t end up among the top-30 money winners at the end of the season. Both players made just six starts in each respective year. The top 36 players following the Invesco QQQ Championship will advance to the season-ending Charles Schwab Cup Championship, the third and final event in the Charles Schwab Cup Playoffs.

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