Golfer's 'birdies for Boston' bid boosted by freak finish

Boston native James Driscoll is raising funds for the victims of Monday's explosions at the city's marathon race.

Story highlights

  • Boston-born golfer James Driscoll pledges $1,000 for every birdie he makes
  • Driscoll cards seven birdies in his opening two rounds and is lucky to make cut
  • A record-equaling 91 players play the third after Jesper Parnevik's missed putt
  • It moved 21 players above the cut line as second round is completed on Saturday

A golfer's bid to raise money for the victims of the Boston bombings was given an unlikely boost when a record-equaling 91 players made the halfway cut at the PGA Tour tournament in South Carolina.

James Driscoll is pledging $1,000 for each birdie he makes at the RBC Heritage at Hilton Head, but he was in danger of missing the weekend action.

However, a missed putt by Jesper Parnevik meant that a group of 21 players -- including Driscoll -- moved above the cut line and went through to Saturday's third round.

"@JesperParnevik can I buy you a drink or 14 tonight?" Driscoll wrote on Twitter.

Driscoll, who was born in Boston, had a big group of friends at the finish line of the marathon when the explosions went off on Monday but none were hurt.

"I've had tons of players ask if my family is OK and if I knew anybody close by," he said on the PGA Tour website. "The crowds have been good. I can tell they've been pulling for me with what I'm trying to do."

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Driscoll carded seven birdies in 36 holes across Thursday and Friday, having set up a pledge site for donations.

One of the bombing suspects was killed by police early Friday, while the other was taken into custody in the evening.

"Before the round I was glued to the TV and the news," Driscoll said. "It's crazy when you watch the news, it's like you're watching a movie. It doesn't seem real."

Boston Bruins owner Jeremy Jacobs has pledged to donate $100,000 on behalf of the baseball franchise to the One Fund Boston charity, while the owner of its home venue, the T.D. Garden — shared with the city's NBA team the Celtics -- will put in $50,000.

The Celtics announced Saturday that the team will seek to raise $200,00 through multiple initiatives.

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"I think that's where it gets its reputation as a crazy sports town; people rally so hard around the local teams that it's such a tight-knit community," Driscoll said. "People are quick to support one another and that's what I'm trying to do."

Usually around half of the 140-strong field at a tournament will be cut at the halfway stage, but Parnevik's 18th-hole miss meant that the weekend ranks were swelled to a number not seen since the 1981 Travelers Championship.

"Everybody in the field at +2, put your envelopes in my locker..." tweeted Parnevik, who was one of 17 players to complete their second rounds on Saturday.

Driscoll did not make the third-round cut, which is the top 70 players, having carded one birdie and two double-bogeys in his opening nine holes.

He added another birdie to take his pledge total to $9,000 but was left in a tie for 88th after recording a 76.

Driscoll was 18 shots behind leader Charley Hoffman, who will take a two-stroke advantage over 2012 U.S. Open champion Webb Simpson into Sunday's final round.