Like the day prior, the Day 2 leaderboard at Augusta is in no way what most thought it would look like as surprises and wily veterans alike mastered the challenging course to post some eye-popping scores.
Bubba Watson was the story on Friday as some of Thursday's top names faded. It wouldn't have mattered—Watson's dominance placed him well ahead of the field:
To view the complete in-depth Masters leaderboard, visit Masters.com.
It's quite remarkable what Watson has been able to do over the course of 48 hours, especially considering he was firmly an afterthought behind names like Adam Scott and Rory McIlroy.
After a 69 on Thursday, Watson went out on Friday and did himself one better with a four-under 68—good for a bit of personal history, as captured by ESPN Stats & Info:
First time in Bubba Watson's career he has opened a major championship with consecutive rounds in the 60's.— ESPN Stats & Info (@ESPNStatsInfo) April 11, 2014
Oh, and it just so happens that the impressive day puts Watson in excellent position as the field enters the weekend:
Bubba Watson currently holds 3 shot lead - the last 7 times the 36-hole leader at the Masters led by at least 3 shots, went on to win twice— ESPN Stats & Info (@ESPNStatsInfo) April 11, 2014
Arguably playing the best tournament of his career thus far, Watson strung together five straight birdies on holes 12 through 16 and said after he hit the clubhouse that his level of play is right where he wants it, per Jason Sobel of the Golf Channel:
Bubba Watson: "I'm back to the level I should be at -- top‑25 player in the world. Not going to say top-five. Sorry, Patrick Reed."— Jason Sobel (@JasonSobelGC) April 11, 2014
Who can slow Watson's roll—if not himself as his last-hole bogey hinted at shades of his typical implosion—now that he has jumped so far ahead of the field?
Fred Couples, of course.
A legend at Augusta, Couples shot a one-under 71 on the day, after a 71 on Thursday, once again putting himself in a good position to contend:
Want a few more surprises? How about high-risers like John Senden and Thomas Bjorn?
Senden also shot a four-under 68 on the day, which jumped him 18 spots in the standings and put him in a prime position to make a run at Watson's top spot.
Bjorn made an even more impressive jump thanks to the same score, as he jumped 24 slots to enter the logjam behind Watson and Senden.
His rise was extremely predictable. For whatever reason, Bjorn annually dominates the second round of the Masters and shot eight birdies to climb back into contention.
Now for the bad.
After dominating the leaderboard on Thursday, Bill Haas dropped in a big way thanks to a stunning 78. Cinderella (hey, it's still sort of close to March) Louis Oosthuizen dropped as well, as he imploded with a 75.
Phil Mickelson turned in a better performance than the day prior, but his 73 still wasn't good enough to make the cut.
Since Tiger Woods' 1st major as a pro in the '97 Masters, there's been 1 major played where neither Tiger or Phil Mickelson played the wkend— ESPN Stats & Info (@ESPNStatsInfo) April 11, 2014
If the first two days have been a good indicator of what's to come, things are about to get hectic this weekend after the first cut.
The Masters are one of the most important sporting events around the globe each year for a reason, and the first two days were just the opening salvo to what has the makings of yet another classic four rounds at Augusta.