Francesco Molinari watches his tee shot on the ninth hole at the 39th Ryder Cup at Medinah Country Club. File photo by Mark Cowan/UPI | License Photo
Francesco Molinari made a bogey on his final hole of the second round on Saturday morning to cap an even-par 72, but still held a one-stroke lead over Billy Hurley III, Seamus Power of Ireland and John Peterson in the Wells Fargo Championship.
Molinari, who has won six times as a pro but never on the PGA Tour, also held a one-stroke after shooting 6-under-par 66 in the first round at Eagle Point Golf Club in Wilmington, N.C.
Rain from overnight thunderstorms caused the second round to be delayed for three hours on Friday, with Molinari and 68 players still on the course when darkness halted play.
Molinari returned on Saturday morning and played his last seven holes in 1 under while finishing on the front nine and was at 6-under 138 for 36 holes.
"I managed to stay patient, just keep doing my thing," Molinari said. "Holed a couple of nice putts, on 17 and 18 last night, and then played well at the restart this morning.
"So, obviously, I'm pleased with where I am at the moment."
Hurley, the 34-year-old graduate of the United States Naval Academy, sank a 10-foot par putt to cap a 3-under-par 69 on Friday, while Power held sole possession of the lead until making two late bogeys in a 71, and Peterson played the last six holes on Saturday in even par to shoot 69.
Rookie star Jon Rahm of Spain, who is fourth in the FedExCup standings, shot 71 on Friday and was two shots back in a tie for fifth with seven other players.
Top-ranked Dustin Johnson, playing for the first time in a month because of a back injury that knocked him out of the Masters, made two late bogeys on Saturday for a 75 and made the cut by one stroke after opening with a 70.
The third round started soon after round two ended Saturday morning.