Collin Morikawa and Joel Dahmen sit at the top of the leaderboard, tied a 5-under for the tournament, followed by 21 players within four shots of the lead.
Morikawa, who is looking for his third win at a golf major, shot a 66 on Friday, sinking five birdies with just one bogey on the day.
A win at The Country Club would be Morikawa’s first U.S. Open victory, and would put him within a win at the Masters of winning all four of golf’s major tournaments.
“I never put an age on [the career Slam]. Never really thought about it. I just wanted to win golf tournaments, win majors, and compete against the best in the world, and luckily, I’ve been able to do that,” Morikawa said, according to Yahoo Sports.
Dahmen – a relative unknown – shot a 68 in round two, and enters the weekend ahead of big names such as Rory Mcllroy, John Rahm, and Scottie Scheffler.
Dahmen is the ultimate underdog, surviving a cancer diagnosis in his 20’s, and earning a spot in the U.S. Open via Final Qualifying.
“I’ve always just tried to be myself,” Dahmen said in the twilight Friday. “My rookie year out here, I was not myself. I was trying to be a pro golfer, and that’s not who I am, per se. I like to be a little more laid back and like to have a little more fun, and I have my best friend beside me in Geno, and he is a ton of fun, and he’s fun to be around.
“It’s kind of weird how us just being ourselves and putting it out there for everyone, it’s kind of endearing,” he continued. “It’s pretty cool to have people root for you.”
Scheffler, the world’s number one golfer and winner of the 2022 Masters tournament, shot a 67 on Friday to put himself within two shots of the leaders. Mcllroy and Rahm are both 4-under for the tournament, one back of Morikawa and Dahmen.
“I think it’s a testament to the health and the state of this game,” Rahm said of the leaderboard after his round on Friday, via ESPN. “It’s pretty amazing to see Rory back-to-back — it’s not like he ever went anywhere. Obviously, Scottie doing what he’s been doing all year, Collin doing what he always does, myself doing what I always try to do, as well. It’s fun for all of us because we all want to compete against the best and beat the best.”