MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. – Karen Paolozzi became the second female player to make the cut in the PGA Professional National Championship, and University of Toledo coach Jamie Broce took the second-round lead in windy conditions Monday.
Playing from tees in front of the men, Paolozzi followed her opening 75 at Grande Dunes with a 71 at The Dunes — the site of the final two rounds — to move into a tie for 31st at 2 over. Suzy Whaley was the first women to make the cut in 2005 at Kiawah Island.
A former Indiana University player, the 31-year-old Paolozzi is a PGA assistant professional at Druid Hills in Atlanta.
“This is exactly what my goal was,” Paolozzi said. “I wanted to make the cut. I wanted to come here and play well. I was a little disappointed after yesterday, but I knew if I put in a solid round today, I had a chance.”
The 37-year-old Broce had an even-par 72 at Grande Dunes to take a one-stroke lead over Ryan Helminen. Broce had a 4-under 140 total.
“Yesterday, the conditions were a little more benign, but today was a lot different. The wind kept you uneasy,” Broce said. “I just got into a plan to hang in there and survive. I got away with a couple bad swings and was able to come back. I just plan to have fun and play golf the next two days and see what happens.”
Helminen, the PGA teaching professional at Ridgeway in Neenah, Wis., overcame double bogeys on his fifth and sixth holes at Grande Dunes for a 73.
“I got a lot out of that round,” Helminen said. “When you’re 5 over through six holes and going the wrong way and you make a birdie and some par-saving putts, it lifts your spirits.”
The top 20 Wednesday will get spots in the PGA Championship in August at Valhalla in Louisville, Kentucky. Paolozzi isn’t eligible to earn a spot in the PGA Championship because she didn’t play from the men’s tees last fall when she qualified in the Northern Ohio PGA Section Championship.