Jerry Kelly shot an even-par 70 Friday to stand alone at the top of the leaderboard after 36 holes at the Senior Players Championship in Akron, Ohio.
Just four players broke 70 in the second round, including Scotland's Colin Montgomerie, who climbed 19 places into a four-way tie for second place at the major at Firestone Country Club, three strokes behind Kelly.
Kelly was among five players tied for the lead heading into Round 2 but was the only one left at the top at the end of it, sitting at 2-under 138 at the halfway point after carding two birdies and two bogeys on Friday. First round co-leader Wes Short Jr. shot a 13-over 83 on Friday and plummeted 51 spots.
"You know, the first day I turned a 64 into a 68 and today I turned an 80 into a 70," Kelly said after his round. "I didn't strike it very well today. I didn't hit fairways like I normally do, so I think if I get back to hitting the fairways, it's a very playable golf course."
Joining Montgomerie (second-round 69) in the cluster in second place at 1-over 141 are Sweden's Robert Karlsson (71) and two other first round co-leaders in Steve Stricker and Australia's Rod Pampling, who shot 3-over 73s Friday.
Spain's Miguel Angel Jimenez, the other co-leader after 18 holes, shot a 74 and sits in a seven-way tie for sixth at 2 over.
Montgomerie, Woody Austin, Dudley Hart and Joe Durant were the only four players to record sub-par rounds of 69. Montgomerie birdied three of his first four holes but posted a bogey and double-bogey on the back 9 to give back some of the early success.
"I have always seen it as a very strict par 70, very strict 70 indeed," Montgomerie said. "And if you get anywhere near 70 or 69, as it was today, you walk off thinking, 'Well, you played good golf.' And that's what happened today with me, so it's OK."
Austin's 69 helped him jump 24 places into the sixth-place group heading into Saturday.
--Field Level Media