* Hit: John Merrick, 26, the former UCLA star, not only shot his second consecutive round of 71, he wound up tied for sixth and earned the right to play in the 2009 U.S. Open at Bethpage Black. The top 15 finishers at Torrey Pines made it.
* Miss: Ernie Els, above, was just two over and solidly in the hunt when he reached the 478-yard 15th, where he promptly made a triple bogey and dropped like a rock. Els finished with a 73 and tied for 14th.
-- Thomas Bonk