San Antonio, TX – Mark Calcavecchia carded a 3-under 69 on Saturday to maintain the lead through two rounds of the AT&T Championship.
Calcavecchia, who finished second in this event last year, fired a 67 during Friday's opening round and held the lead before a 3-hour, 15-minute weather delay due to thunderstorms set play back.
Darkness eventually suspended play at the TPC San Antonio and 33 golfers were forced to complete their opening rounds on Saturday.
When the first round finally concluded Calcavecchia still held the lead. He then reeled off five birdies and a pair of bogeys to reach 8-under 136 -- good for a 4-stroke lead over closest challenger Kenny Perry (70).
"The ball's kind of in Mark's court," said Perry. "If he plays a good round, I'm not going to catch him. Mark has never changed. He's always been a flag- hunter."
Brad Faxon and Esteban Toledo both carded a 67 to move into a tie for third place at 3-under, while Fred Funk, who won the Greater Hickory Classic two weeks ago, shot 69 to share fifth with a large group at minus-2.
Tom Kite recorded a 70 on Friday, but stumbled to a second-round 74 and fell into a tie for 13th place at even par. There is little room for error for Kite, who is 31st on the Champions Tour money list, with only the top 30 advancing to next week's season-ending Charles Schwab Cup Championship at Desert Mountain in Scottsdale, Arizona.
Calcavecchia has been a hard man to catch thus far. He tallied six birdies against a lone bogey on Friday to build a 3-stroke lead, then added to the advantage a day later.
This year's Montreal Championship victor opened Day 2 with four consecutive pars before bogeying the par-4 fifth. He bounced back with a birdie on the next and was even at the turn after recording a bogey and a birdie on No. 8 and No. 9, respectively.
Calcavecchia heated up during his bogey-free outward nine and kept the field at bay with a trio of birdies to close with the lead.
"I didn't play near as good as yesterday, for some reason," said Calcavecchia. "It was easier conditions than yesterday. I hit it a little bit crooked. To shoot 3-under, though, considering I didn't hit it as near as good as yesterday, was really good."
NOTES: Last year's winner, Fred Couples, is not on hand to defend his title as his balky back injury flared up once again...The tour's leading money winner, Bernhard Langer, is 2-under...Kite trails Mark McNulty by $32,506. McNulty is 5-over.