Northern Trust Open 2013: John Merrick enjoys 36-hole success at home

On USC day, it was a UCLA Bruin who stood out among the crowd of the world’s best. 

Southern California native John Merrick fired a 5-under 66 during Friday’s second round to vault himself into contention fat the 2013 Northern Trust Open at Riviera. 

After Round 2, he spoke with the media on what was a mild day where the scores were low. 

“It was a good day. I felt comfortable out there,” he said. I think I made six birdies and one bogey. you kind of expect a little tougher conditions… It was actually kind of mild out there so it was great for scoring.” 

As of 2:00 p.m. Friday, there were 43 players under par with the projected cut to be +1. Merrick fired a round of 68 on Thursday and followed it up with four birdies on the front nine and two on the back to put him just one shot back of leader Sang-Moon Bae halfway through the day’s action. 

Merrick, a UCLA alum and a Long Beach, Calif. native and resident is familiar with the confines of the historic course and knows that it takes a well-rounded game to score well. 

“(I’ve played Riviera) gosh, counting the two rounds, maybe 30 to 34 rounds, he said. “This is a course you can’t fake it around, you need to think around here and you can’t just pul out driver on every hole or shoot at every flag, so you really have to know where to miss it and where to position yourself.” 

We’ll be sure to update this once the day’s action is over with tee times for Saturday’s action. 



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Michael C. Jones is the managing editor and founder of Sports Out West and a Southern California-based sports journalist. His credits include Yahoo Sports and Bleacher Report, among others.


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