May 23, 2014

Garnett takes early second-round lead at Colonial

Brice Garnett holds an early 1-shot lead over Chris Stroud and Robert Streb at the Crowne Plaza Invitational at Colonial.

Brice Garnett shot a 4-under par 66 on Friday to close at 133 and take an early 1-shot lead over Chris Stroud and Robert Streb in the second round of the Crowne Plaza Invitational at Colonial.

Stroud and Streb were among the early finishers at 134.

Seven golfers were tied at 135, including first-round leader Dustin Johnson and Bo Van Pelt.

Johnson shot a 70 on Friday.

“It was OK, just didn’t hole the putts, got a couple of bad kicks. Other than that, I played pretty solid again today,” Johnson said.

Garnett, who shot 70 on Thursday, started the day with an eagle on the first tee on the way to a 33 on the front nine.

“The eagle at the start was super nice to go ahead and get 2-under early and know that there is a lot of golf ahead of me to make some more birdies out there,” Garnett said. “I had the putter rolling great the first two days and finally started to hit a few more fairways and greens today.

Garnett played in a group with Pat Perez and Danny Lee. They teed off on No. 1 at 7 a.m.

“There was much wind, the greens were super receptive, and I was in the first group out,” Garnett said. “It was an early wakeup call, but you’re always kind of excited to get that first tee time.”

Stroud and Chris Kirk shared the best round of the day so far at 64. Stroud credited his new driver and 3-wood. It’s called a Mini Driver from TaylorMade.

“The Mini Driver is doing great. My driver has been bad, so I’m going to go back to my other driver,” Stroud said. “I was so relaxed out there. It’s obviously a little luck. I was making a 50-footer, 60-footer, making every 30-footer, so it’s nice.”

Stroud made eight birdies and two bogeys. Through two rounds, he has made a total of seven putts from over 20 feet, including a 56-foot, 4-inch shot on the fourth hole.

“I’ve hit it terrible the last two days, really, really bad, but putted awesome,” Stroud said. “I don’t have to worry about the greens. I just need to get the ball on the greens. Usually, it’s the opposite.

“It’s a little different this week, but, man, it sure is nice to make putts.”

In other early results:

•  Defending champion Boo Weekley shot 69 to finish at 140.
•  Jordan Spieth, who had a large gallery, shot 69 to score 136. “It was up and down, just too many bogies on this golf course. I had four bogies on the back nine today when I had it going. I’m off to a solid start,” he said.

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