BROUSSARD — Peter Uihlein is no stranger to climbing on back of golf carts.
"I’d be lying if I said I’d never done it, I’m sure I’ve done it through the years," Uihlein said. "I’ll scare an odd ball every now and then and hit in some weird spots.”
The former U.S. Amateur champion did just that Friday when it came to his final hole during the second round of the Chitimacha Louisiana Open presented by MISTRAS.
Uihlein's tee shot on No. 9 landed among the dozen or so golf carts parked behind the shipping containers-turned-tournament offices.
After briefly debating with his caddie whether or not to take a drop, Uihlein opted to go over the carts and trailer. Thus The need to climb onto the cart to see the line.
"My relief would have been basically behind the tree on the right, I figured the lie was okay and I had a line on it," Uihlein said. "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.”
Uihlein's cart cardio paid off as he was able to go up-and-down for par to card a 4-under 67 to begin Saturday's third round as the tournament's co-leader at 8-under par.
Uihlein's par save ensured a bogey-free round — one of only five players to do so on Friday — and made sure his pair of early birdies would not go to waist.
"I hit a good drive down the middle at 10, wedged to a couple of feet so that was a nice start," Uihlein said. "On 12 I hit a really good drive, went into that second bunker, I did the right thing and laid up instead of trying to go for it, wedged it to about a couple of feet as well, so a nice start to the day for sure.”
Uihlein shares the 36-hole lead with Roberto Diaz.
The 34-year-old native of Mexico shot a 6-under par 65 on Friday, and came out strong with six birdies in his first seven holes.
"I started pretty good today, pretty much played the same as I did yesterday, today I made a few more putts," Diaz said. "To be honest, I didn’t hit the ball great, but it was one of those days that the hole looks big and my speed was correct, and I knew it was going to be a grind since the weather wasn’t promising last night. I mentally prepare myself to come out here and grind and things happen my way.”
Diaz credited working on his short game in the offseason.That additional work gives Diaz confidence every time he stands over his ball.
"When I putt I feel like I’m going to make all of them," Diaz said. "That’s what we practice. I’m standing over a 60-footer trying to make it. I’m not going to lag it out there. It’s nice whenever they go in, there’s so many variables that go into, a putt."
Diaz wasn't the only golfer to start his round with a flurry of birdies.
Braden Thornberry birdied nine of his first 14 holes before bogeying the par-four No. 18. Thornberry's 8-under 63 was the low round of the second round.
“I had six on the front, I think I birdied every par-five so I kind of played them how I’m supposed to, and then made a couple of extra putts," Thornberry said. "On the back nine I made about a 25-footer for par on 14 I think, that kind of kept the momentum going even more. It was kind of one of those days where golf felt pretty easy, 12 hours ago I was struggling and trying to shoot even par. That’s kind of how it goes."
For the 23-year-old, he goes from worrying about doing enough to make the cut to now entering the third round tied for third on the leaderboard.
"Not exactly where I expected to be, I didn’t expect to be anywhere near the lead after today," said Thornberry who starred at Ole Miss. "My goal was to go out there and shoot three or four under and make the cut and kind of go from there, but it’s obviously nice when you can take it really deep and put yourself in a good spot."