Putnam, Knox top Las Vegas leaderboard
LAS VEGAS (AP) — Andrew Putnam birdied two of the last three holes Friday for a 6-under 65 and a share of the second-round lead with Russell Knox in the U.S. PGA Tour’s Shriners Hospitals for Children Open.
Putnam, who birdied all three par 5s, is playing his fourth PGA Tour event after earning his tour card this year through the Web.com Tour.
“I started off slow, one bogey, but played good out there,” he said. “I played the par 5s well today, was able to take advantage of those.”
Knox, from Scotland, had a 67 to match Putnam at 10-under 132 at TPC Summerlin. Knox had six birdies and two bogeys — on Nos. 2 and 3 — in the second round.
“I got a bit worried, though, because I was all over the map,” Knox said. “I didn’t feel real good with my swing, and I knew if I just made some pars, eventually something would click. And I made a couple putts, which really settled me down.”
Andrew Svoboda and Tony Finau were a stroke back. Finau shot 65, and Svoboda had a 67.
Defending champion Webb Simpson topped the group at 8 under after a 65.
“I just kept it right in front of me,” Simpson said. “That’s what I did last year on this golf course. If you keep hitting the fairways, you’re going to have opportunities to make birdie.”
Martin Laird, the 2009 winner who was tied with Stewart Cink for the first-round lead, was also in the group at 8 under after a 70. He had a double bogey on the par-4 seventh — his 16th hole of the day.
Spencer Levin, George McNeill, Ben Martin, Bo Van Pelt, Scott Piercy and Wes Roach rounded out the group at 8 under. Levin and McNeill shot 63 — the best rounds of the week.
Cink followed his opening 64 with a 75 to drop into a tie for 45th at 3 under. He had a quadruple bogey on the par-4 11th — his second hole of day — and made a bogey on the 12th. He also had a bogey on No. 6 and a double bogey on No. 7.
Stuart Appleby went the other direction, rebounding from a 74 with a 64 to move into a tie for 30th at 4 under.
Bae Sang-moon, the Frys.com Open winner Sunday in the PGA Tour season opener in Napa, California, also shot 71-72 to miss the cut.