Roberto Diaz and Peter Uihlein reached 8-under to lead after the second round of the Chitimacha Louisiana Open presented by MISTRAS. The cut was made at 2-over 144 with 74 professionals advancing to the weekend, marking the first time since 2008 that the 36-hole cut has been made above par at the tournament.
On the second consecutive chilly day at Le Triomphe Golf & Country Club, Roberto Diaz started off scorching hot with birdies on six of his first seven holes. He played even-par golf from there on out with two birdies countered by two bogeys for a second-round 6-under 65.
“At the John Deere Classic a couple of years ago I shot 62 on Thursday and it was kind of like that, one of those rounds that the hole looks big,” reflected Diaz. “You keep hitting it on the green and keep making putts and all of a sudden you’re 8-, 9-, 7-under. It was one of those days that the hole looks big, you just have to keep doing that because these guys are very, very good.”
Diaz has three runner-up finishes in 112 career starts on the Korn Ferry Tour – including at the 2020 Panama Championship – but has never broken through with a win. Diaz graduated from the Korn Ferry Tour in 2017 by finishing 25th in the regular season standings to claim the final PGA TOUR card. He competed on the PGA TOUR for two seasons before returning to the Korn Ferry Tour in 2020.
Diaz and his wife, Eugenia, had their first child in December and he credited that to a more relaxed approach to golf.
“We had my son and he’s been a blessing; it’s been the best thing that I’ve had happen to me,” said Diaz. “It’s a different mindset now. I just enjoy being at home and enjoy being around him and my wife, it’s just different. Golf is not the most important thing anymore. I’m not even thinking about golf when I’m out there. I’ve always been analytical on my game and very judgmental and right now I don’t really pay much attention…I‘m not really putting in the time that I used to and I think it’s actually making me enjoy it more.”
Uihlein followed up his 4-under first round with a matching 67 in Friday’s second round. He enjoyed a bogey-free round – one of only five on the course on Friday – and had a relatively uneventful round going through his first 17 holes. At his final hole, the par-4 ninth, he hooked his tee shot through a grove of trees where it came to rest behind a line of staged carts. He opted not to take free relief because his angle would not have improved. He hit his approach shot directly over the carts to 50 yards short of the green before making a five-foot par save to cap his round.
“My relief would have been basically behind the tree on the right, but I figured the lie was okay and I had a line on it,” laughed Uihlein. “I pulled it a bit, I was trying to hit it a little further right than where it ended up, but I figured as long as I got it airborne I was going to carry it…I’d be lying if I said I’d never done it, I’m sure I’ve done it through the years. I’ll scare an odd ball every now and then and hit in some weird spots.”
Uihlein, a current PGA TOUR member, is seeking his first top-10 on either the PGA TOUR or Korn Ferry Tour since the 2019 AT&T Byron Nelson (T5). He won the 2017 Nationwide Children's Hospital Championship during the Korn Ferry Tour Finals to graduate to the PGA TOUR.
“It’s nice playing two good solid days,” said Uihlein. “I thought today was a lot better than yesterday even though the score was the same, but I feel a lot better going into tomorrow.”
Diaz and Uihlein lead three players by two strokes entering moving day. Third-round tee times will run from 7:40 a.m. to 12:10 p.m. on Saturday off of the first tee.
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