SEA ISLAND, Ga. (Feb. 1, 2014) -- Bryson Dechambeau shot a 2-under 70 to storm into a three-way tie for the lead after two rounds at the 2014 Jones Cup Invitational at Ocean Forest Golf Club.
Dechambeau joins reigning U.S. Mid-Amateur champion Mike McCoy and 2013 South Beach International Amateur winner Gregory Eason atop the leaderboard heading into Sunday's final round.
“It’s awesome to be near the top,” said Dechambeau, who’s playing in the event for the first time. “It’s a good start to the season.”
Eason shared the lead after Round 1 and is the only player from that trio to hold form Saturday on Sea Island. After a 2-under 70 on Friday, Eason battled a tough front nine that saw three bogeys. He came in even on the back to stay atop the leaderboard.
Curtis Thompson of LSU and Auburn's Michael Johnson were Eason's co-leaders after the first round but both shot 76 Saturday to fall to a tie for eighth place.
Dechambeau, who started the day tied for 15th, was red-hot to start his round, recording birdies on the 1st and 2nd -- both par 4s -- and was able to tame the firm and fast Ocean Forest to move into a tie for the lead.
“I made a few long putts today and unlike (Friday), I was driving the ball well today,” Dechambeau added. “The greens were still very fast but I like them that way. This course is in great shape and I think it suits me pretty well."
McCoy, one of just a handful of mid-amateurs in the event, shot 71 to climb from the ninth-place spot he started the day in.
Arkansas' Sebastian Cappelen, Kent State's Corey Conners, Andrew Dorn of Coastal Carolina and reigning U.S. Junior champion Scottie Scheffler are all tied for fourth place.
Four more players join Thompson and Johnson in eighth place, including U.S. Walker Cup team member Cory Whitsett of Alabama and recent Tennessee graduate Rick Lamb, who shot the day's low round -- a 3-under 69.
All told, there are 12 players within three shots of the lead and another 13 inside of five shots entering what is bound to be a wild final round.
“It’s anybody’s game but in the end you can’t worry about what anyone else is doing,” Dechambeau said. “I know the course will be set up pretty tough.”