SOUTHPORT, England — Mo Martin had a plan for Royal Birkdale, and it's working better than she imagined at the Women's British Open.
Martin took two putts from short of the green on the par-5 18th hole Friday for her 10th birdie in two rounds, and her second 3-under 69. That gave the 31-year-old American a three-shot lead over Spain's Beatriz Recari (74-67) and former U.S. Women's Open champion So Yeon Ryu (71-70).
"It's always nice when your plan pans out," Martin said. "So it's fun to be here."
For Michelle Wie, it was fun while it lasted. Coming off her first major in the U.S. Women's Open at Pinehurst No. 2, Wie kept putting herself in tough spots and couldn't convert enough pars. She followed her highest score of the year (75) with one that was even worse, a 78 to miss the cut by three shots.
Ayako Uehara, the first-round leader, shot 7-over 44 on the back nine for 7-over 79. And then there was Lexi Thompson, the Kraft Nabisco winner, who began her round by hitting two shots out of bounds and making 10. She fought back for 77.
monty still on top: Colin Montgomerie shot par 71 on the second day of the U.S. Senior Open in Edmond, Okla., to maintain his one-shot lead. He opened with 65 for 6-under 136. Scott Dunlap shot 69-68. He was at 2 under after starting on the back nine, then went back to the front nine and birdied Nos. 2, 5 and 7 on his way to 3-under 32. "I have been particularly good with the putter this week," he said. "Been tidy. I have made a couple, made all my short ones. You know, those will be big in any tournament, for sure, but especially a major." Bernhard Langer, who leads the Champions Tour with three wins this season, moved into a tie for the lead with 32 on the front nine, then grabbed the advantage with birdie on 14. He had bogeys on 15 and 16, both on close misses, then bogeyed 18 to finish at 4 under.
european pga: Rory McIlroy surrendered the lead at the Scottish Open with his latest second-round meltdown, leaving three tied for first on a day when brutal winds played havoc with the field. Kristoffer Broberg of Sweden, Argentina's Ricardo Gonzalez and Marc Warren of Scotland led at 6-under 136, with just 17 of 150 players shooting below 70 on the par-71 Royal Aberdeen links course. McIlroy shot a course-record 64 in the first round but followed with 78, continuing a worrying trend this season that has seen the former world No. 1 fail to build on strong starts. "Having to talk about it, it's always being brought up, it's sort of in your mind," a frustrated McIlroy said. Justin Rose shrugged off the effects of hayfever to sign for 68 and was alone in fourth, a shot behind the leaders. Defending champ Phil Mickelson was among the afternoon starters who had to deal with a punishing breeze, especially on the back nine. A 73, which left him at 1 under, was something of an achievement but left him "mentally drained" just a week before the defense of his British Open title. "I'm a little concerned that it's taking up a little bit more energy than I'd like ahead of next week," he said. "But it's also a good opportunity to focus on the more difficult shots that we'll have next week. So it kind of goes both ways."
pga: Zach Johnson and William McGirt were at 12-under 130 and tied for the lead at the halfway point of the John Deere Classic in Silvis, Ill. They were a stroke ahead of Steven Bowditch, Johnson Wagner and Brian Harman. Three-time Deere winner Steve Stricker shot 65—133 to vault into contention, and was tied for sixth with Rory Sabbatini, Ryan Moore and Todd Hamilton. Johnson, the Deere winner in 2012, shot 4-under 67 in the afternoon despite two bogeys in his last four holes. That dropped him into a tie with McGirt, who added 66 to his opening 64 but, like Johnson, finished with bogey. McGirt, 35, is winless on the PGA Tour in 111 starts.