MEMPHIS, Tenn. – Harris English is becoming more comfortable on the PGA Tour every week, and feels right at home on TPC Southwind’s Bermuda grass greens.
English shot a 6-under 64 on Friday to open a two-stroke lead in the St. Jude Classic. The 23-year-old former Georgia star had never even had a piece of a lead on the PGA Tour until Thursday when he found himself tied with five others, including Davis Love III, after 18 holes.
English, who is playing his second year on the PGA Tour, used a hot putter to roll in five birdie putts, holed out from 181 yards for eagle on the par-4 fifth and had only one bogey to finish the second round at 10-under 130.
It’s awesome to be in this position, said English, whose best finish is tied for sixth at the Zurich Classic in New Orleans. I’ve worked very hard the last couple weeks and couple months to get in this position, and I feel like I’m ready and I feel like I got a lot of good people around me to help me.
Shawn Stefani was second after a 65. Paul Haley II and Scott Stallings each shot 68 to reach 5 under. Love was tied with four others at 4 under after a 70, and defending champion Dustin Johnson also had a 70 to finish at 3 under. Phil Mickelson was 2 under after a 67 in his final tune-up for the U.S. Open next week.
Only four players had rounds of 4 under or better at TPC Southwind. Doug Labelle II and Scott Verplank were the only other players to go at least 4 under with a 66 apiece.
LPGA: In Pittsford, N.Y., Chella Choi shot a 5-under 67 to take a one-shot lead over Morgan Pressel after the first round of the rain-delayed LPGA Championship.
Choi, who has never won on the LPGA Tour, had five birdies and a bogey-free front nine to move into the lead and held on in steady rain over her final seven holes.
Former Fort Wayne resident Amanda Blumenherst shot an 8-over 80.
CHAMPIONS: In Birmingham, Ala., Duffy Waldorf shot a 4-under 68 to take a one-stroke lead over Jeff Sluman after the soggy, weather-delayed second round of the Regions Tradition, the second of five Champions Tour majors.
Waldorf had three birdies and a bogey on both the first nine holes and the last nine to top the Shoal Creek leader board at 9-under 135. The Champions Tour rookie also led after two rounds last week in Iowa in the Principal Charity Classic but closed with a 1-under 71 to tie for third.
Sluman, the first-round leader, had a 71 with an eagle on the par-5 third hole, two birdies and three bogeys after matching his best opening round score on the Champions Tour with a 65.
EUROPEAN: In Atzenbrugg, Austria, Joost Luiten of the Netherlands shot a 4-under 68 to take a one-stroke lead into the third round of the Lyoness Open.
Luiten had three birdies on both the front and back nine, offset by two bogeys, to finish at 11-under 133. He’s followed by Paul Waring of England (67), Callum Macaulay of Scotland (66) and Eduardo de la Riva of Spain (69).