Johnson leads as only player in red figures as Woods, Spieth and McIlroy miss cut
Dustin Johnson grabbed the 36-hole lead at the U.S. Open after firing a three-under 67 as a host of other stars struggled once more at Shinnecock Hills on Friday.
Starting the day in a four-way tie for the lead, Johnson broke away with four birdies and one bogey.
With the wind down in the second round, Johnson took advantage of his length while also hitting 86 per cent of his fairways.
While Johnson has been great tee-to-green, his putting has helped him pick up strokes on the field.
"I feel like I got good control of the speed," Johnson said after his second round. "I feel like I've got good feel on the greens right now. I putted well for the first two days. My speed's been really good. Even when I've had long putts, I've got it up there pretty close to the hole. And you get difficult putts out here with a lot of break on them, and I feel like I'm seeing the lines pretty well right now."
Scott Piercy rebounded from a rough start to finish the second round tied for second at even par. After starting the day with three bogeys in his first seven holes, he rebounded on his back nine to shoot a one-over 71.
Charley Hoffman shot a one-under 69 to join Piercy at even. Still searching for his first major victory, Hoffman bogeyed the 18th to knock himself out of Saturday's final group.
Brooks Koepka and Tommy Fleetwood led a strong group tied for fourth at one over after firing tournament-low four-under 66s. Koepka, the defending champion, birdied six of his last 11 holes.
"I feel like I've got some momentum on my side," Koepka said after his round. "Obviously, with finishing with six birdies, I played really solid. I felt like I played really solid yesterday. There's nobody more confident here than me. I feel like I'm playing really well. Just need to continue what we're doing."
Ian Poulter, Justin Rose and Henrik Stenson also finished round two at one over.
Rickie Fowler shot a one-under 69 to reach two over for the tournament. He ended his day with a bogey, and some shaky putting, but he hit 93 per cent of his fairways.
Phil Mickelson shot a one-under 69 to sneak inside the cut line at six over. He shot a bogey-free two-under 33 on the back nine to make the weekend.
However, Jordan Spieth (nine over), Tiger Woods (10 over), Rory McIlroy (10 over) and Jason Day (12 over) were not so lucky, as they missed the cut.
"Unfortunately, it's just what I've done the last few events. I just haven't putted well," Woods said. "You know, if I would have putted like I did the beginning of the year with this ball striking, that would be ideal. Unfortunately, I just haven't done that."
Scott Gregory endured a miserable U.S. Open, the Englishman following up his 22-over 92 with a 75.