Barnes Sets U.S. Open Scoring Mark

June 20, 2009

FARMINGDALE, N.Y. (AP) -- With a record-setting show, Ricky Barnes clearly has regained his USGA championship stroke.

Barnes, the 2002 U.S. Amateur champion, set the U.S. Open 36-hole scoring record by finishing two trips around Bethpage Black in 8-under 132. He completed his second round Saturday morning, making three birdies in nine holes for a 65.

The previous 36-hole record was 133, set by Jim Furyk and Vijay Singh at Olympia Fields in 2003. Barring someone in the second half of the draw going on a birdie barrage, Barnes was almost certain to be the midway leader.

'It's pretty cool,' Barnes said. 'Obviously at the beginning of the week you didn't think that score was out there. Obviously with some tees moved up and the soft greens helped it out. And obviously with my ball-striking was the most probably impressive part of the first 36 holes.'

Obviously.

Barnes has hit 31 of 36 greens this week; the rest of the field is only hitting the green in regulation about half the time.

'If you would have told me I would have been 8 under and only [a] one-shot lead, I would have said, 'You're kidding me,' ' Barnes said. 'But I'll take it. It was solid play. And I'm happy with the position I'm at.'

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