Hideki Matsuyama of Japan watches his shot on hole No.
10 on Friday during the second-round of the U.S. Open
Championship at Erin Hills in the town of Erin.
John Ehlke/Daily News
TOWN OF ERIN—
Japan’s Hideki Matsuyama got a jump on the rest of the
field for the day traditionally dubbed “Moving Day.”
Matsuyama shot a
bogey-free 7-under-par 65 in Friday’s second round of
the 117th U.S. Open Championship at Erin Hills to move
from tied for 82nd to tied for eighth, two shots off the
lead, at 5-under.
difference was I putted very well today,” Matsuyama said
through a translator. “I’m very excited and very happy
with the score.”
Four golfers are
tied for the lead heading into the weekend’s final
rounds – Paul Casey, Brian Harman, Tommy Fleetwood and
Brooks Koepka. They are all at 7-under through the first
“It’s good,” said
Harman, who shot 2-under Friday. “It’s where you hope to
be. I was pretty nervous this morning and I got off to a
little shaky spot. And I was proud I hung in there.
Finished off pretty well.”
Rickie Fowler, the
leader after Thursday’s opening round, shot a 1-over-par
73 on Friday and is at 6-under. Also at 6-under are
Jamie Lovemark and J.B. Holmes.
Tied for eighth is
Matsuyama, Si Woo Kim, Xander Schauffele, Cameron Champ
and Brandt Snedeker.
“I feel pretty
confident,” said Koepka, who played in the 2011 U.S.
Amateur at Erin Hills. “And I’m excited. I’m driving the
ball really well.”
Casey started his
day with a par on the par-4 No. 10. He birdied No. 11
and made par on No. 12.
On the par-5 No.
14, he made an 8, a triple bogey. Then he bogeyed No.
Then, starting on
the par-4 No. 17, Casey made five straight birdies.
“I was upset with
the score I had made, but it had, in no way, any effect
on my attitude or how I was going to then approach the
rest of the round or the next shot,” Casey said of his
The third day is
typically called “Moving Day” because it is the day
players try to best position themselves for the final
“Shooting a good
score today gave me a lot of confidence,” Matsuyama
said. “I really haven’t been hitting the ball well of
late. To shoot a good round like today, I’m certainly
looking forward to the weekend.”
Grouped with Fowler
and Jon Rahm, Matsuyama went right to work, teeing off
from the par-5 597-yard No. 1. Putting from off the
green for eagle, Matsuyama rolled the shot within 5 feet
of the cup, and made his birdie.
He followed that up
with birdies on five of the next seven holes to surge up
the leaderboard. He narrowly missed a birdie on No. 9
that would’ve given him a 29 on the front nine.
His lone birdie on
the back nine was on the par-3 No. 13, making a putt
from more than 30 feet.
On the par-5
676-yard No. 18, Matsuyama narrowly missed a birdie that
would’ve given him an 8under for the day, which would’ve
tied a U.S. Open record for a score relative to par in
the second round.
“I didn’t,” he said
when asked if he knew about the record. “I thought 63
was the number. I wasn’t thinking too much about
Matsuyama has yet
to win a major. However, he’s been close of late.
He has finished in
the top 11 in three of the last five majors, including
tied for seventh at the 2016 Masters and tied for fourth
at the 2016 PGA Championship.
He was tied for
11th at this year’s Masters.
He missed the cut
in the 2016 U.S. Open and Open Championship.
“I really can’t
think about it until maybe after I win,” he said when
asked what it would mean to win a major.
If he wins, he
might become Japan’s next hero.
On May 28,
countryman Takuma Sato won the 101st Indianapolis 500,
becoming the first Japanese-born driver to do so.
“I don’t know much
about car racing,” Matsuyama said. “But I do know he was
the first Japanese driver to do it and what a great feat
“It was a