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Welcome to History

Rory McIlroy sprinted so far from the field on Friday that someone in the press tent asked if there was a “mercy rule” in the U.S. Open. When he got to 13 under par at 17, he not only set the new all-time low at any point in Open history, but he was ten shots clear of the field, the normal ten-shot rule ‘merciful’ cutline for the weekend. Until he double bogeyed the eighteenth, he had not been over par on a single hole.

His 131 total is the lowest 36-hole total, ever. His six shot lead matches Tiger Woods‘ record for the halfway point at the Championship. His 65 on Thursday was the best of the day in round, one and his 66 on Friday tied for the best of the day for the second round.

For the first two days of the Championship, McIlroy beat the best ball score of the remainder of the group.

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Not Flying the Colors

If Rory McIlroy would hang on to win the U.S. Open, it would make five straight majors without an American winner. In the history of the four majors, that has never taken place in golf. In 1994 all four majors were in the hands of non-Americans but Paul Azinger had won the 1993 PGA Championship the year before and Ben Crenshaw, Corey Pavin and John Daly won the Masters, U.S. Open and the Open Championship in 1995.

The longest run for the Americans with consecutive major wins began with Lee Trevino at the PGA in 1974 and ended with Gary Player’s win at the Masters in 1978, a total of thirteen consecutive U.S. wins.

Dan Reardon has covered 75 major championships, five Ryder Cups, dozens of PGA, LPGA and Senior PGA Tour events. Visit CBS Local St. Louis for additional golf coverage.