Former US Open champion McDowell ready to put brutal Merion rounds behind him

  • Article by: DAN GELSTON , AP Sports Writer
  • Updated: June 15, 2013 - 3:15 AM

ARDMORE, Pa. — Graeme McDowell has already moved on to other majors.

He may as well. McDowell's is out of the hunt for a second career U.S. Open championship.

The 2010 champ was 7 over after a 77 on Friday in the second round at Merion Golf Club.

"I'm temporarily dejected," he said. "This game is not about your bad weeks. Of course, it's about the major championships, and you're trying to prepare yourself as well as you can coming into weeks like this.

"I'll shake it off and I'll get ready for The Open Championship in a few weeks' time. That's my next target. The Irish Open and the French Open between then. I'll be competitively sharp going into Muirfield and I'll continue to draw on this season."

McDowell had double bogeys on the 10th, 11th, 17th and 18th holes. He posted just three birdies in the second round.

"It's not the way I wanted to play the last couple of days," he said. "But this place is very hard."

___

PAN'S MOVE: Amateurs Michael Kim of Cal and Cheng-Tsung Pan of Taiwan were 2 under for their second rounds Friday and among those who didn't finish.

Pan must finish his round Saturday morning. He had two birdies and no bogeys to zip into a tie for third place at even par. Kim was 1 over so far and tied for eighth.

Pan is a 21-year-old junior at the University of Washington. He missed the cut in his other Open appearance in 2011, saying he was too excited and had too many distractions to play his best game.

This time, Pan said he embraced the pressure that comes along with a major.

"I feel I belong to that kind of place," he said. "I'm not saying I'm good enough, but I love this kind of feeling and the competition is great. I just want to be here always."

____

PHILLY FAVORITE: Phil Mickelson is a favorite at just about any course, particularly in the U.S. Open. Philadelphia is no exception.

"He brings the energy out there," Justin Rose said.

Rose, however, has his own support in town. Three years ago, he won the AT&T National just down the road at Aronimink.

"The Philly crowd has been great for me," Rose said. "They have been very supportive of me this week. But obviously Phil, the U.S. Open fan favorite, I think there's a lot of goodwill for him."

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