Rookie Garnett leads by stroke

FORT WORTH, Texas — PGA Tour rookie Brice Garnett grew up in a small Missouri town where his home course is a nine-hole layout.

FORT WORTH, Texas — PGA Tour rookie Brice Garnett grew up in a small Missouri town where his home course is a nine-hole layout.

Garnett has gone from Daviess County Country Club and then Missouri Western State to leading at Hogan’s Alley after two rounds at Colonial.

After starting with an eagle, Garnett shot a 4-under 66 on Friday and moved to 7-under 133. He had a one-stroke lead over long-putting Chris Stroud (64) and Robert Streb (68).

“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.”

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 PGA Tour events, the longest active streak.

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 at 2-over 142 after a 70.

The 30-year-old Garnett is from Gallatin, Missouri, a town of about 1,800 people. He has only one top-10 finish in his 18 previous starts on the PGA Tour, and has never won on the Web.com Tour. This is the first time he has even been in the top 10 after the second or third round on the PGA Tour.

“I think each and every week the rookies feel more comfortable. I know I have,” Garnett said. ’You can’t get down on yourself being a rookie. … It’s been fun, and I’m learning each and every day.“

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

Walker had a strange occurrence when his tee shot at the 17th hole appeared to nick a bird in flight — though the bird kept flying before Walker made another par.

“We saw (the ball) fly the whole way and then it kind of disappeared over the trees,” said Walker, the only player still without a bogey this week. “I didn’t see it.”

Stroud made five putts from over 20 feet, all coming in his last 12 holes. His made putts in the round 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.

And Stroud did that using a new putter he picked up this week.

“It has no lines on it. … I’ve been using another, but it had a bunch of lines on it,” Stroud said. “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. I’ve just been rolling it beautifully.”

Stroud drained a 16-footer on the 193-yard 13th hole, his third birdie of the day coming on his fourth hole. The Texas native was just getting started, with his first 20-footer coming at the par-3 16th when he made birdie from 23 1/2 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. There was 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. Really, really bad. But putted awesome,” he said. “So I don’t have to worry about the greens. I just need to get the ball on the greens. Usually it’s the opposite. I usually hit the ball really well and struggle to get the ball in the hole.”

On his final hole, the 406-yard dogleg-right ninth, Stroud’s approach was well left into a bleacher area near a concession stand. After a free drop and pitching to about 26 feet on the fringe, he two-putted from 26 feet for bogey.

Tim Clark was 7 under and tied for the lead after four consecutive birdies only six holes into his round of 68. But he three-putted at the par-3 16th and didn’t have another birdie until No. 9, his last hole, to get to 5 under and tied for fourth.

Just Posted

Firefighters to visit Oriole Park homes near industrial fire to answer questions

About 80 homes were evacuated on Wednesday because of nearby fire

Trump Russia probe finally delivers some answers

WASHINGTON — After nearly two years of waiting, America is getting some… Continue reading

Trans Mountain Pipeline deadline extended

OTTAWA — The federal government is delaying a decision on the Trans… Continue reading

Kenney talks pipelines with Trudeau after election win, calls it cordial

EDMONTON — Jason Kenney, Alberta’s incoming premier, said he cordially talked pipelines… Continue reading

Shooting victims in Penticton, B.C., remembered before vigil at city park

PENTICTON, B.C. — Family and friends are remembering neighbours who were gunned… Continue reading

Updated: Industrial fabrication shop in Red Deer destroyed in morning fire

About 30 workers got out safely before building in north end gutted

Earth, meet Polo: Ralph Lauren unveils plastic bottle shirt

NEW YORK — Earth, meet Polo. Polo Ralph Lauren on Thursday launched… Continue reading

Statistics Canada reports retail sales rose 0.8 per cent in February

OTTAWA — Statistics Canada says retail sales rose 0.8 per cent in… Continue reading

Inflation rises 1.9% on higher prices for fresh vegetables, mortgage costs

OTTAWA — Canada’s annual inflation was up last month as price pressures… Continue reading

Netflix adds 9.6M subscribers in 1Q as competition heats up

SAN FRANCISCO — Netflix kicked off the year with the biggest subscriber… Continue reading

Liberals find anti-Trudeau sentiment on campaign trail in Prince Edward Island

OTTAWA — When voters in Prince Edward Island go to the polls… Continue reading

Officer tells of finding body at trial for B.C. dad accused of killing daughters

VANCOUVER — A police officer choked up Tuesday as he recalled finding… Continue reading

Man faces murder charges in slayings of two men, two women in Penticton, B.C.

PENTICTON, B.C. — A former city employee described as a hard-working, civic-minded… Continue reading

A look at Alberta’s elections since the province was created in 1905

EDMONTON — A chronology of Alberta elections: Nov. 9, 1905: Lawyer Alexander… Continue reading

Most Read