LOS ANGELES, California: American Matt Kuchar used a hot start to shoot his second-straight 63 and grab the halfway stage lead Friday at the PGA Tour’s Sony Open by one stroke over Andrew Putnam.
Kuchar made birdie on his first three holes then closed with his sixth birdie of the day to move to 14-under 126 at the Waialae Country Club course.
The 40-year-old is aiming for his second win in three starts on the Tour after claiming the Mayakoba Golf Classic earlier this season. Winning the Mayakoba ended a long winless drought that stretched back to 2014.
“Just two great days. To shoot seven-under back-to-back is unexpected, but certainly awfully exciting,” said Kuchar, who finished his front nine by making an eagle on the par-five hole.
Kuchar is one shot clear of Putnam who fired a five-under 65 and four strokes ahead of Stewart Cink and Chez Reavie who shot 62 and 65 respectively in the Tour’s first full-field event of 2019.
First round leader Adam Svensson of Canada made the cut despite shooting 13 shots worse on Friday following his opening round of 61. The Tour rookie is tied for 20th with a five-under 135 total.