By Rachel Finkbeiner, Staff intern
Many golfers make it to the U.S. Open only to play two rounds and not see another on day three.
After finishing Friday with a birdie, Clayton Rask lives on to round three in the 114th Open at Pinehurst, N.C.
“I didn’t want to make it all the way here and not make the cut,” said Rask, 29-year-old Otsego native.
The make or break it decision came at No. 9 where Rask only needed par.
“I had about eight feet. I had heard that I had made the Q cut. I ended up making it,” said Rask.
Rask finished the day with a 71, bettering his round one score by two shots.
The Otsego native began round two on No. 10. On Thursday, Rask struggled on holes 11, 12 and 13, getting bogeys on all three. In round two, Rask slid through those holes with three straights pars. He attributed this to better placement on the tee and a better approach shot.
Rask had one double-bogey on Thursday, and one Friday, on No. 15, with a bogey on No.4. Pinehusrt is no easy course. Rask mentioned how hard it is to get out when you land in the wrong spot.
Ending the day on a birdie, and not in a tough spot, was a relief to the golfer.
“I felt that much better walking off that green.”
According to fans and twitter followers, Rask has been getting some TV airtime. But to the former Gopher, it’s just another round of golf.
The goal for Rask in round three Saturday is to stay on the leader board and do his best to move up.
Also, “It’s the same as the first two days, go and have fun and enjoy this moment. And obviously play as well as I can.”
Rask is four strokes above par — only one shot from Phil Mickelson who sits at three above.
On top of the leader board is Martin Kaymer of Germany with a big lead at 10-under par.
Rask tees off at 10:06 a.m. ET with another American, Kevin Stadler.
The former Elk and Gopher standout has played in various pro tours, currently the Canadian Tour. He has tried to qualify for the U.S. Open each year since college and finally succeeded this year at a qualifier in Eugene, Ore., where he placed second.