By Chuck Garbedian Special to Published Jul 18, 2009 at 8:05 AM

There was a time when the U.S. Bank Championship in Milwaukee was the Greater Milwaukee Open. During that time, the tournament took place the first weekend in September. There were times during Friday's second round at Brown Deer Park when I remembered what it was like to witness a PGA Tour event at the doorstep of a Wisconsin autumn.

Cool, windy and wet was the order of the day and there was little doubt that it would be up to the players to supply the heat.

By the end of play Friday, there were 12 players within four strokes of the lead heading into a weekend that promises to be a shootout.

At the top of the leader board is Australian Greg Chalmers, who fired a second round 3-under par 67 to give himself a two-shot cushion over Chris Riley, Jeff Klauk and Kris Blanks. Kevin Na, Marc Turnesa and Steve Flesch trail Chalmers by three shots.

To a player there has been praise for Brown Deer Park Golf Course as a good, solid golf course, one where you have to manage your golf ball and take control of your game to score well. Conditioning has also been a key and lead superintendent Tim Wegner and his staff have done a great job getting ready for PGA Tour action.

Cheeseheads: Those of the Wisconsin flavor to make the cut at the US Bank Championship in Milwaukee include Skip Kendall (T-14; 66-70 -4), Jerry Kelly (T-23; 69-68 -3) and Mark Wilson (T-31; 68-70 -2). Marquette University grad Mike Van Sickle missed the cut with rounds of 72-71, while J.P. Hayes will also not play the weekend after rounds of 71-73.

The cut: A total of 80 players made the cut at 1-over par 141 on Friday, with low 70 scores and ties playing the weekend. Following the third round, the field will be cut again to low 70 and ties via the PGA Tour's secondary cut rule, which states that the field will be cut to low 70 players and ties if the 36-hole cut results in more than 78 players making the cut.

With the cut coming at +1, a lot of interesting names were left outside looking in to Brown Deer Park; they included: Fred Funk, Nathan Green, David Gossett, Scott Gutschewski, Marco Dawson, Rocco Mediate, Billy Andrade, Matt Bettencourt, Eric Axley, Robert Gamez, Rich Beem and Chris DiMarco to mention a few.

Scoring: PGA Tour rookie Kris Blanks posted the best round of the 2009 tournament so far with Friday's 7-under par 63. The dive into the deep end of the scoring pool is a career low for Blanks.

Omar Uresti used a 3-iron from 200-yards out on No.7 to record a Hole-in-One on Friday. It was the first hole-in-one since Richard S. Johnson's ace last year at the 14th hole in the first round.

Former Major Championship winner Bob Tway moved up from a T-95 on Thursday to T-23 on Friday based on the strength of a 6-under par 64.

Kevin Na is the US Bank Championship's FedEx Cup Points leader with 870 (20th in the standings). Na has posted six top-10s this season including a tie for 3rd at The Players.

Invitation: Please consider this your invitation to come out to Brown Deer Park Golf Course and enjoy third and fourth round action of the US Bank Championship in Milwaukee. The PGA Tour is in town and the show is worth the price of admission, which is just $25 per person at the gate and includes parking on the grounds. Professional, major league action, right in your own back yard with the players that make it happen.

Let's get it started: Saturday tee times begin at 8 a.m., with Peter Lonard and Aaron Watkins leading the way off of tee No. 1. Chalmers will go off at 1:50 p.m. with Chris Riley in tow.




Chuck Garbedian Special to
Chuck has more than a decade of experience in many aspects of the golf industry -- from sales to teaching to hosting radio talk shows. He has been media chairman for the Greater Milwaukee Open since 1992, has served as women's golf coach at Wisconsin Lutheran College and is a member of the Golf Writers Association of America. He currently does work for PGA TOUR Network on SIRIUS XM Radio.