BY KEVIN RAFTERY
Daily Sports Writer
Published April 8, 2011
AUGUSTA, Ga. — For most of the back nine in Friday’s second round at Augusta National Golf Club, Michigan senior Lion Kim led his three-man group, which included two-time former Masters Champion Jose Maria Olazabal and 20-time PGA Tour Champion Davis Love III.
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He was the leader at the end of the round too, as Kim shot an even par 72 to end the first two days at 4-over. Olazabal finished 6-over, and Love III finished 8-over.
While Kim beat two of the PGA Tour’s premiere golfers, it looks like it won’t quite be enough to make the cut. Currently, the cut line is hovering around 1-over.
But there were several times throughout Friday’s round where Kim looked like he belonged in Augusta this weekend.
Kim birdied both par 5’s on the front nine — he stuck his third shot on the par 5 second hole to less than a foot, and on the par 5 eighth hole, he nailed a 15-footer to get back to one-under for the day.
On the back, Kim was steady as a rock, sinking multiple 5 to 10 footers to save par.
But he missed good looks at birdies on holes No. 13 and 17, costing him a chance to have a legitimate chance of making the cut.
And after a solid drive on No. 18, Kim hit his second shot to the back left of the green, leaving himself with a nearly impossible putt. As he tried to play the severe left-to-right break, Kim hit the ball just a little bit too hard; it went all the way to the fringe and didn’t come back down as he was expecting, leaving him with a 25-footer for par.
He missed the putt and ended his round with a bogey.
But even with the blunder on the final hole, Kim improved his score yesterday by four strokes today — quite an accomplishment for the 22 year-old senior.