PGA Tour rookie Garnett leads at Colonial

PGA Tour rookie Garnett leads at Colonial

Credit: Getty Images

FORT WORTH, TX - MAY 23: Brice Garnett lines up a putt with his caddie on the 5th hole during Round Two of the Crowne Plaza Invitational at Colonial on May 23, 2014 at Colonial Country Club in Fort Worth, Texas. (Photo by Scott Halleran/Getty Images)



Associated Press

Posted on May 23, 2014 at 7:47 PM

Updated Friday, May 23 at 10:56 PM

FORT WORTH, Texas (AP) — PGA Tour rookie Brice Garnett opened with an eagle Friday on his way to a 4-under 66 and the second-round lead at Colonial.

At 7-under 133, Garnett had a one-stroke lead over Robert Streb (68) and Chris Stroud, who made five putts from more than 20 feet in a 64.

"I'm just keeping my head down and trying to make as many birdies as possible," Garnett said. "I'm going to try to embrace it this weekend and have fun, and we'll see where we stand come Sunday."

Australian Adam Scott, playing as No. 1 in the world for the first time, had birdies on three of his last seven holes for a 68 to get to 1 under. He has made the cut in his last 34 U.S. PGA Tour events, the longest active streak.

"It's not the worse (position), but tomorrow for me is the important day here this week," he said. "For me to have a chance, I'm going to have to put it into gear and try to get within three or four (shots) to have a chance going into Sunday."

Matt Kuchar, ranked No. 4 in the world, had a chance to move to the top with a victory, but he missed the cut by a stroke, shooting 72-70.

Garnett has only one top-10 finish in his 18 previous starts on the PGA Tour. This is the first time he has even been in the top 10 after the second or third round.

"I think each and every week the rookies feel more comfortable. I know I have," Garnett said.

First-round leader Dustin Johnson (70) dropped into a seven-way tie for fourth at 5 under. That group also included Jimmy Walker (68), a three-time winner this season and No. 1 in the FedEx Cup standings.

Stroud made putts in the round that combined for just under 221 feet, the most on the PGA Tour since Brent Geiberger covered 240 feet during the first round at Booz Allen in 2006. He is using a new putter he picked up this week.

"I simplified my putting. Get over it, line up and try to bring the putter back square and back to the ball square at impact," he said. "I've just been rolling it beautifully."

Stroud drained a 16-footer on the 193-yard 13th hole, his third birdie of the day. He then made his first 20-footer at the par-3 16th, birdieing from 23½ feet.

There was a 22-footer for birdie at the par-5 No. 1 hole, and he rolled in a 56-footer across the green at No. 4, the difficult 211-yard par 3. He then sank a 26-footer at No. 6 and yet another long birdie putt at his last par 3, a 34-footer at No. 8.

"My driver has been bad. ... I've hit it terrible the last two days," he said. "Usually it's the opposite. I usually hit the ball really well and struggle to get the ball in the hole."

Tim Clark was 7 under and tied for the lead after four consecutive birdies early in his round, but he three-putted at the par-3 16th and didn't have another birdie until No. 9, his last hole, to shoot a 68 to get to 5 under.