- Associated Press - Friday, August 12, 2016

RIO DE JANEIRO (AP) - British Open champion Henrik Stenson is close enough to think about adding an Olympic gold medal to his silver claret jug.

It just required a long and wild route to get into contention Friday.

Marcus Fraser of Australia got off to a quick start, stretched his lead to four shots at one point and wound up with a 2-under 69 for the 36-hole lead in the first Olympic golf competition since 1904. At 10-under 132, he had a one-shot lead over Thomas Pieters of Belgium, a former NCAA champion at Illinois who closed with three straight birdies for a 66.

Still, it was the sight of Stenson on the leaderboard that was so hard to ignore.

Only a month ago, the 40-year-old Swede won his first major and got his name on the claret jug at Royal Troon with the lowest score in major championship history. On Friday, he had a 68 to go into the weekend at Olympic Golf Course two shots behind and in the final group.

In the wind and a hard rain, Stenson had to hit 4-wood to reach the green on the second hole and made a 60-foot birdie putt. He hit into the water on the next hole and still had a full 4-wood just to reach the front part of the green. Stenson made a par putt from 108 feet.

He followed by duffing a tee shot and making bogey, and it was a relief to play what he called ordinary golf until another wild finish.

Stenson had a three-putt bogey, followed by two birdies, and then a tee shot he missed so badly that it came up 30 yards short and into a bunker for a bogey on the par-3 17th. He finished his round with a delicate pitch from a drop area, but only after his caddie had to ask Brazilian fans in the bleachers around the 18th green to move 20 feet because their shadows were dancing around his golf ball.

The Americans, the only country with four players, were still lingering. Matt Kuchar had a 70 and was seven shots behind, following by Bubba Watson (67) at 2-under 140, Patrick Reed (69) nine shots back, and Rickie Fowler (71) 14 shots out of the lead.

JOHN DEERE CLASSIC

SILVIS, Ill. (AP) - Wesley Bryan took the lead in the rain-delayed John Deere Classic, five days after earning a PGA Tour card with his third Web.com Tour victory of the year.

Bryan played 26 holes in 10 under Friday at TPC Deere Run, birdieing three of the final holes to finish off a first-round 66 and shooting a 64 in the second to reach 12-under 130.

Area favorite Zach Johnson faced a long day Saturday after not even getting onto the course Friday.

Play resumed five hours late at noon after nearly 2.4 inches of rain overnight - on top of the inch Thursday morning and afternoon that delayed play 3 1/2 hours. Because of the wet conditions, the players were allowed use preferred lies in the fairways in the second round.

Bryan has made a fast rise since focusing on tournament golf last year after working as a trick-shot artist. The 26-year-old former South Carolina player dominated the Web.com Tour this season, winning in Louisiana, Mexico and Kansas and earning $449,392 in 13 starts.

Steve Marino was a stroke back after rounds of 66 and 65.

Johnson opened with a 65 on Thursday. The 2012 tournament winner is from Cedar Rapids, Iowa.

U.S. SENIOR OPEN

UPPER ARLINGTON, Ohio (AP) - Former Ohio State player Joey Sindelar shot a 4-under 66 to take the second-round lead in the U.S. Senior Open.

One of four former Buckeyes in the field at Scioto Country Club in suburban Columbus, the 58-year-old Sindelar had five birdies Friday, including two in a row after a bogey on No. 5. He had a 5-under 135 total after opening with 69 on Thursday.

He made a 40-foot birdie putt on the par-3 17th, after pars on the six previous holes.

Billy Mayfair, making his first senior start after turning 50 last Saturday, was a stroke back after a 67. He had four birdies and a bogey.

First-round leader Vijay Singh followed his opening 66 with a 75 to drop into a tie for eighth at 1 over. Defending champion Jeff Maggert also was 1 over after a 71.

John Daly had an 81 to miss the cut. He had three double bogeys, six bogeys and a birdie.

JUNIOR PGA CHAMPIONSHIP

RUMFORD, R.I. (AP) - Lucy Li won the Junior PGA Championship at age 13, a year off LPGA Tour star Lexi Thompson’s record in the event.

Li, from Redwood, California, closed with a 2-under 69 in hot and windy conditions at Wannamoisett for a two-stroke victory. She finished at 7-under 206 in the rain-shortened event.

Thompson won the first of her two titles in 2007 at age 12 at Westfield Group in Ohio. Two years ago at age 11, Li became the youngest qualifier in U.S. Women’s Open history.

Norman Xiong won the boys’ division by two strokes. The 17-year-old Xiong, a high school senior in Canyon Lake, California, who will begin play at Oregon in a year, shot a 1-under 68. He was the only player under par for 72 holes, finishing at 2-under 274.

Sixteen-year-old Patrick Welch of nearby Providence was second after a 67.

In girls’ play, Mariel Galdiano of Pearl City, Hawaii, the leader after each of the first two rounds, had a 77 to tie for second with Alyaa Abdulghany (70) of Newport Beach, California.

Li, Xiong, Abdulghany and Welch earned spots on the U.S. Junior Ryder Cup team.

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