Shanshan Feng opened a two-shot lead Friday after two rounds of a U.S. Women’s Open that got its first visit from a sitting president.
Fresh from a Bastille Day celebration in Paris, President Donald Trump pulled into his Trump National Golf Club in Bedminster, N.J., around 3:40 p.m., visited his president’s box next to the 14th green less than two hours later and played to the crowd, waving at the fans, giving them the thumbs up and pumping his fist.
That’s what a president can do for crowds not used to being within a 100 yards of one. Many critics of the president had hoped he would stay away from the $5-million tournament because of his comments about women and the fear that he would steal the spotlight.
Only three sitting presidents have attended USGA events, with Warren G. Harding (1921) and Bill Clinton (1997) going to the U.S. Open.
Feng was the star on the course for the second straight day. The 27-year-old Chinese player shot a two-under-par 70 and had a 36-hole total of eight-under 136 on the 6,732-yard course that played even longer because of rain over the past two days.
Amy Yang of South Korea continued her good play in the Women’s Open and remained in second place, although her deficit grew to two shots after a 71.
Jeongeun6 Lee, who has had a win and 10 top-10 finishes on the KLPGA Tour, shared second after posting a second straight 69.
Lee uses the “6” after her first name because there are six other South Korean players with the same name.
Hye-Jin Choice, a 17-year-old from South Korea who is the world’s second-ranked amateur, also was at six under after a second straight 69. She was tied with Feng at 8 under after 15 holes, but bogeyed two of her next three holes to fall back.
Seon Woo Bae, a winner in South Korea last year, was alone in fifth place at five under after a 69.
Top-ranked So Yeon Ryu (72) and 2015 winner In Gee Chun (70) topped the group at four under, while Marina Alex (70) of Wayne, N.J., was the top American at three under. Lydia Ko (73) and Brooke Henderson (71) also were at three under.
Earlier in the day, 2014 winner Michelle Wie withdrew because of a neck injury. She shot a 73 on Thursday and stopped on her second hole the next day.
Among those missing the cut at two over were Brittany Lincicome, who said two weeks ago that Trump should not attend the tournament so the focus would be on the golfers, and Danielle Kang, who two weeks ago won the KPMG Women’s PGA. Second-ranked Ariya Jutanugarn and two-time Open champion Inbee Park also missed the cut.
Rodgers leads PGA event
Patrick Rodgers shot a seven-under 64 on Friday to take a two-shot lead after the second round of the John Deere Classic.
Rodgers had eight birdies and a bogey to finish at 13-under 129 at TPC Deere Run in Silvis, Ill. Finishing on the front nine, he had five birdies in a seven-hole stretch before closing with a bogey on the par-4 ninth.
Bryson DeChambeau was second after a 65. Local favorite Zach Johnson, the 2012 winner, had a 67 to join Charles Howell III, the co-leader after the first round, at 10 under. Howell followed his opening 63 with a 69.
Kevin Tway (63), Chesson Hadley (64), Chad Campbell (68) and J.J. Henry (64) were 9 under. Tway had nine birdies in a 10-hole stretch en route to the best round of the day. Hadley is coming off a victory Sunday in the Web.com Tour event in New York.
Two-time Masters champion Bubba Watson shot a 70 to make the cut at 3 under, as did Davis Love III (68).
Langer surges to lead at Senior Players
Bernhard Langer made five birdies on the back nine Friday to take a two-shot lead over Corey Pavin before rain suspended play late in the second round of the Constellation Senior Players Championship in Owings Mills, Md.
The 59-year-old Langer was six-under par through 16 holes and 13 under for the tournament. The three-time defending champion had his only bogey of the day on No. 1, a 360-yard par-four hole.
Pavin was the clubhouse leader after shooting a 68. Brandt Jobe was at 10 under with two holes to play, and Scott McCarron shot a 68 to get to nine under at the midpoint.
A fierce early afternoon thunderstorm caused a delay of play for 2 hours 24 minutes. A second stoppage occurred at 5:44 p.m. and lasted for 35 minutes before play was called with 30 players left on the course.