The former Georgia star putted for birdie on every hole on his way to a second consecutive 7-under-par 63, giving him a two-shot lead over fellow rookie Scott Langley (66 on Friday) and Scott Piercy (64) in the Sony Open.
Henley’s 14-under 126 broke the 36-hole scoring record at this event by two shots. The previous 36-hole record at the Sony Open was 128 by five players, most recently John Cook in 2002.
“It’s pretty surreal,” Henley said.
Langley, who was paired with Henley for the first two rounds, said he tried to stay aggressive, and then he felt he had no choice. He birdied his last three holes to reach 128.
“It’s never easy to back up a really good round, I kind of got off to a little slower start,” Langley said. “But it was certainly nice to finish the way I did and kind of get back in it with Russ. He played so well, and I was just trying to keep pace as much as I can. To finish that way was really good.”
EUROPEAN TOUR: In Durban, South Africa, Louis Oosthuizen made a long birdie putt at the final green to take a one-shot lead after the second round of the Volvo Champions – and swapped a car for an excavator to use on his South African farm.
Oosthuizen had 8-under-par 64 on Friday on a rain-softened Durban Country Club course for a 12-under 132 total, one shot ahead of former Augusta State golfer Scott Jamieson (64) and Thongchai Jaidee (68).
By sinking the last putt, Oosthuizen’s team won a pro-am event that awarded a car to the winners. However, the farming enthusiast talked to organizers and swapped the car for an excavator, which happened to be the prize for anyone who made a hole-in-one at the 15th.
Six others trail Thongchai and Jamieson by six shots.
Oosthuizen added to his collection of agricultural equipment – after raising a few eyebrows when he won the 2010 British Open and spent a large chunk of his prize money on a customized tractor for his farm. On Friday, he, Thongchai and an amateur player won the pro-am event.
Meanwhile, Jamieson said he’s focused on winning in Durban for a second time in a month. He recently won Nelson Mandela Championship at the nearby Royal Durban course.
“I’m definitely comfortable playing here in Durban and the confidence is high as well, which is all-important,” he said.