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Air Force grad Kyle Westmoreland tied for lead at PGA Tour Q-School

Air Force grad Kyle Westmoreland tied for lead at PGA Tour Q-School

PONTE VEDRA BEACH, Fla. — Kyle Westmoreland said he wouldn’t have reached the PGA Tour if it had not been for his years at the Air Force Academy and subsequent military service.

But he said he might have strayed a bit from that kind of mental and physical rigor in the past year and wants to regain that kind of focus.

Westmoreland looked focused enough on the TPC Sawgrass Dye’s Valley Course on Friday when he birdied five of his eight holes and went on to shoot the day’s low round of 64 on that course to grab a share of the 36-hole lead in the PGA Tour Q-School at 7-under 133.

Westmoreland is tied with Harrison Endycott (68, Sawgrass Country Club) and Blaine Hale Jr. (66, Sawgrass). The trio is one shot ahead of PGA Tour veteran Harry Higgs (65, Sawgrass) and Trace Crowe (65, Sawgrass).

Tied at 5 under are Keita Nakajima of Japan (66, Sawgrass), who is the highest-ranked player in the world in the field at No. 90, Brandon Harkins (66, Valley) and Hayden Spring (69, Sawgrass).

Higgs and Harkins had bogey-free rounds.

Raul Pereda had a bogey-free 67 at the Valley, and DP World Tour winner Julian Suri, matched that 67 at the Valley. The two are tied for 15th.

Third round will begin early; Monday finish possible

The remaining field of 159 players (there have been six withdrawals) will start an hour early at 7:30 a.m. ET on Saturday to try to beat a line of severe weather predicted to sweep through the area late Saturday afternoon and into the night.

There are predictions of 2-4 inches of rain and wind gusts as high as 50 mph, leaving the timing of Sunday’s final round in doubt. The Tour is prepared to finish the tournament on Monday.

In the meantime, players took advantage of slightly calmer winds on both courses in the second round. The field averaged 69.873 on the Valley Course, more than a shot less than the first round, and knocked almost three shots off the average Sawgrass score, going from 73.099 to 70.122.

“There’s still some wind out there,” said Westmoreland, who made a series of putts of 15 feet or less on the front, until capping his run with a 40-footer at No. 8. “Especially here [at the Valley] you get in the trees and it swirls a little bit. My caddie…


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