Tucson, AZ (SportsNetwork.com) – Marco Dawson carded his second straight 5-
under 67 on Saturday and that gave him a 1-stroke lead after two rounds of the
inaugural Tucson Conquistadores Classic.
Dawson ended 36 holes at 10-under-par 134. He will go for his first Champions
Tour victory on Sunday.
Bart Bryant (67) and Wes Short, Jr. (66) are tied for second place at minus-9
on the Catalina Course at Omni Tucson National Resort
First-round leader Jerry Smith dropped three strokes in the last two holes to
fall into fourth place at 8-under-par 136. He carded a 71 in round two.
Michael Allen (67) and David Frost (71) are tied for fifth at minus-6, while
Colin Montgomerie (72), Tom Pernice, Jr. (70) and Billy Andrade (70) are one
shot back at 5-under 139.
Dawson got off to a quick start with birdies at one and two. He cooled off
with four pars in a row from the third.
The 51-year-old caught fire starting with a long birdie putt on the par-3
seventh. He followed with another birdie at the eighth.
Dawson kept rolling as poured in a 35-footer for birdie at the ninth. Around
the turn, he made it four in a row as he got up and down for birdie on the
That burst moved him to 11-under. Following six consecutive pars, Dawson
tripped to a 3-putt bogey at the 17th. He parred the last and was handed the
lead as Smith stumbled late.
“I putted really well today. I made some long putts, especially in the middle
there,” Dawson said. “I also had a lot of good saves on four, 12 and 18.
“I was in this position last year (in San Antonio) and thought I did pretty
well on Sunday, but Michael Allen played really well down the stretch. If I
play well, I’ll be happy with that.”
Bryant, who was the runner-up at the ACE Group Classic, had a birdie and three
pars in his first four holes. He jumped to 8-under thanks to three straight
birdies from the fifth.
Around the turn, Bryant moved to minus-10 with an eagle at the 10th. He
dropped shots at the 12th and 16th, but birdied the par-3 17th to end one
Short flew up the leaderboard early as he was 4-under par through four holes
thanks to two birdies and an eagle. He traded a bogey for a birdie from the
fifth. Short climbed to minus-8 as he birdied the par-5 eighth.
He mixed three birdies and two bogeys over the final nine holes to post
Smith birdied three of four holes from the second to jump to 10-under. After
nine pars in a row, he birdied the par-5 15th. Smith tumbled out of the lead
as he 3-putted for bogey at the 17th. At the last, his drive found water and
that led to a closing double-bogey.
NOTES: Dawson has the 36-hole lead for the second time on the Champions Tour
… Dawson won the 2002 LaSalle Bank Open on the Web.com Tour … The 36-hole
leader has won two of the first three events this season on the Champions Tour
and the winner has come from the final group in all three events.