Sun, Jul 13, 2003 - Page 22 News List

Jerry Kelly shoots 3-under 67 in rain

AP , MILWAUKEE, WISCONSIN

Jerry Kelly's day was tougher than most at the Greater Milwaukee Open.

Kelly had to use a replacement putter for his final 10 holes Friday, but shot a 3-under 67 on a rainy, windy day at Brown Deer Park. That left him within a stroke of Jay Don Blake, the leader at the halfway point.

Brett Quigley (67) and Patrick Sheehan (65) were also a shot behind Blake, the first-round leader who carded a 68 in the morning to stand 8-under for the tournament at 132. Later, a rain delay of 1 hour, 38 minutes softened the greens.

Seven golfers -- including 2001 winner Shigeki Maruyama -- were at 135. The rain delay proved hectic for Kelly, who grabbed his putter nine minutes before the restart and watched in shock as the head spun off.

"I don't know what happened," he said. "I'm walking to the practice greens getting ready to practice and the next thing I know the thing is turning in my hands,"

Rather than risk the epoxy not drying in time, Kelly sprinted to his truck in the parking lot and grabbed a spare, which he accidentally left in his truck after taking it to the Western Open last week.

"I was going to take it out of my bag when I got to Madison. I forgot. It ends up coming with me to Milwaukee," Kelly said. "That was pure luck right there.

"So, very unlucky but fortunate that I had a backup because it's a teardrop, it's a roll-face, you're not going to find one of those anywhere."

Not only that, but a marshal accidentally stepped on his driver head, Kelly said. He was so flustered he couldn't remember whether it happened before or after his fiasco with the putter.

After finding a rules official to make sure he wasn't in violation, Kelly took eight practice putts, then used the replacement putter the rest of the round.

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