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.
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.