Eckroat, Yuan, An Share Lead After Two Rounds in 59th Sony Open in Hawaii

Austin Eckroat enjoyed his 24th birthday, but wasn’t able to celebrate too much.

Eckroat (pictured) shot four-under-par 66 and is tied with Carl Yuan of China and Byeong Hun An of South Korea midway through the 59th Sony Open in Hawaii at Waialae Country Club in Honolulu, in the shadow of Diamond Head Crater.

“We’ll have a nice dinner tonight and maybe a glass of wine, but there is too much golf left to start celebrating,” said Eckroat, who is seeking his first victory as a professional. “I’m just looking forward to the weekend and hope to play as well on Saturday and Sunday.

“I’m just doing the simple things better these days and only hope to keep going that way. I’m striking the ball well and making some putts, and it helps that I played here last year because I know how this course plays.

“Hopefully, there will be some celebrating to do on Sunday night.”

Eckroat, who finished one stroke behind Jason Day in the 2023 AT&T Byron Nelson, birdied four of the last six holes on his front nine after starting at No. 10, made his lone bogey at No. 2 and made his final birdie at No. 9 to record a 36-hole score of nine-under par 131.

An equaled that by making three birdies on each nine in a bogey-free 64, while Yuan birdied four of the first seven holes on his way to a 65 that included a single bogey at No. 3.

“I was very thrilled to see I was tied for the lead,” said Yuan, who won the 2022 Chitimacha Louisiana Open on the Korn Ferry Tour for his second pro victory. “It gives me another chance to improve and get better.

“I was really trying to get myself ready and come out and play good in Hawaii and on the West Coast and try to earn myself back on the PGA Tour. Luckily, I’ve got full status, but I’m still trying to do the same thing and come out here and play the best I can.”

First-round leader Cam Davis of Australia sank a 16-foot eagle putt on his last hole for a 70 and is one stroke behind in a big tie for fourth with 50-year-old Stewart Cink, who had a bogey-free 65; Ben Griffin, who eagled the ninth hole in a 62; Chris Kirk, winner of The Sentry last week, who shot 66; Kurt Kitayama of Chico and UNLV, who eagled his last hole for a bogey-free 62; Keith Mitchell, who eagled No. 9 for a 64; Taylor Montgomery, who had two late birdies for a 68; Grayson Murray, who made four birdies on each nine in a 63; Stephan Jaeger of Germany, who birdied five of the last seven holes to cap a 67, and Mattieu Pavon of France, who birdied the last five holes for a second straight 66.

Defending champion Si Woo Kim of South Korea eagled the ninth hole in a bogey-free 66 and is tied for 26th, while ninth-ranked Brian Harman is tied for 55th following a 68, and eighth-ranked Matt Fitzpatrick of England finished at 69-71—140 to miss the cut by two strokes.

Gary Woodland, the 2019 U.S. Open champion who was playing for the first time since undergoing brain surgery in September, shot 71-71—142 and missed the weekend by four shots.

For complete results and third-round tee times, visit:  

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