Seamus Power timely birdied four of his closing five holes to get back into contention ahead of the weekend rounds at the AT&T Byron Nelson.
Power’s progress had stalled with eight pars ahead of his super finish in a five-under 67 for an 11-under total which sees him inside the top-10 heading to the weekend on the TPC Craig Ranch course at McKinley and to the north of Dallas.
Three share the lead on 15-under at the halfway stage – Ryan Palmer posted a sizzling 62, little-known Englishman David Skinns shot a round of 63, before late in the round Texas-based Columbian Sebastian Munoz birdied three of his closing five holes in his 69 – in the $9m event.
The 40-year-old Skinns, born in Lincoln, finally secured his place on the main PGA Tour in being among one of the top-25 qualifiers off last year’s secondary Korn Ferry Tour.
“It has been a bit of a struggle,” admitted Skinns, who worked as a delivery driver when golf shut down due to the coronavirus pandemic in 2020.
“I came off a really nice run on the Korn Ferry Tour to finish and I felt good going into the PGA Tour season. I played nicely in Napa (the opening event) the first two days and then didn’t play well.
“But then when you find yourself not getting in every tournament and you start to slip behind a little in the points it’s tough to see yourself continue to fall down the list.
“You’ve eventually got to figure out a different game to play, you can’t keep looking at that otherwise it will demoralise you a little bit. You just got to get back to the reason that you’re here and I think I’ve done that decently the last six weeks or so, even though the results haven’t quite shown it.
“Most of my pro career it’s taken me a little while to get used to every level. I’m just excited to be in a position this weekend where I can make a step forward hopefully.”
And Skinns is no stranger to winning have won twice on the Korn Ferry Tour and on seven occasions on the Hooters Tour.
For his part, Power headed into the second round well-placed after his opening 66 despite being six shots back of Munoz, who shot the lights out on day one with a sizzling 60.
Power was off the 10th on day two, and it was a welcome start with birdies at the 11th and 12th holes to move to eight-under though his progress was checked in finding water guarding the green off the tee, in going for the green at the very short 316-yard par-4 14th hole.
It was then par golf for the World No. 41 from holes 15 to the fourth hole before coming to the par-5 fifth in two-putting for a birdie ‘4’. Power then birdied the next, the sixth on the card and moved to nine-under to total in seeing a nine-footer in the cup.
The Waterford star then got to double figures at 10-under by holing a six-foot birdie at his 17th hole minutes before ending his day’s work superbly two-putting for a birdie ‘4’ at his last.
His five under effort handing the now Las Vegas based golfer a share of ninth and just four back.
Meanwhile Kinsale’s John Murphy was heading home early and really not managing to get out of first gear on a ‘birdie feast’ golf course with scores of 76 and 69.
Murphy managed just six birdies over his two rounds in the soon-to-be 24-year old’s second invitation on the PGA Tour this year where he has missed both cuts.
Murphy has contested six events on the Challenge Tour but played four rounds in half while he’s yet to contest a DP World Tour event in 2022.