He's glad to at least be in the hunt this year.
"I haven't played very well, but when I saw this place last week, I thought it was a good fit for my game," he said. "It's nice to come here and feel like I'm swinging pretty well and I've got a chance. So, hopefully, I can throw a good one in tomorrow and really be in the mix come Sunday."
DOUBLE DIP: Carl Pettersson saw double on No. 5.
Pettersson had to check his backswing after an errant shot from No. 2 rolled his way and smacked his ball off its spot. Pettersson stopped his swing and backed off the ball, chuckling at the truly bizarre shot.
The wayward ball came from Brandon Crick. He had to hit from where the ball landed.
Pettersson placed the ball at its original spot. He probably wished his ball was whacked into the cup — he had a bogey on the par-5 hole.
"Luckily, I wasn't in my downswing, because if I would have missed the ball, it would have been, I don't know what the ruling would have been on that," he said. "But it might not have been good. I regripped and hit a decent shot after that."
LAWRIE HONOR: Paul Lawrie fought back with a 71 and feared he would miss the cut. The day wasn't a total loss. Hours later, the former British Open champion was among those selected for the Order of the British Empire in the Queen's Birthday Honors.
More that his performance on the course, the Scot was recognized for his foundation that helps pay for kids to get into sport. It started with golf and now includes soccer, rugby and some tennis.
"I wanted to do it before I won the Open, but I didn't think I was a big enough name and didn't think sponsors would be interested or the kids would want to participate in the events," Lawrie said. "All of a sudden, I win the Open. It's getting pretty big and growing every year, but I have to say a lot of people do a lot of good work."
Lawrie holds the major championship record for the largest comeback in the final round, making up 10 shots in the final round at Carnoustie in 1999, and beating Jean Van de Velde and Justin Leonard in a playoff.
"It's a huge honor," Lawrie said.
LOCAL FAVORITE: Jim Furyk had the home crowd on his side.
He just failed to deliver a performance worth cheering for Friday.
Furyk, born in the nearby Philly suburb of West Chester and raised in Lancaster, shot a 9-over 79. Furyk, the 2003 U.S. Open champion, won't be adding a second one to the collection. He hadn't played Merion Golf Club since the 1989 U.S. Amateur.