Left-hander Brian Harman went island hopping in Hawaii and brought his game with him.
Harman, who finished third in the Sentry Tournament of Champions last week at hilly Kapalua Resort on Maui, shot 7-under-par 63 to take a three-stroke lead over five players in the Sony Open at Hawaii at relatively flat Waialae Country Club in Honolulu on Oahu.
“The biggest elevation change here is from the walk down from the hotel,” said Harman, who claimed his second PGA Tour victory last season in the Wells Fargo Championship. “I’ve always kind of felt like as long as there’s fairways and green and holes to putt it, then I’m going to be fine.
“I’m making putts, but I’m also putting myself in position to make those putts. I’m getting a bunch of looks. I’m not making everything I’m looking at, but I’m hitting a lot of good putts and made a few. I’m just going to show up tomorrow and try to hit the first tee shot best you can and go from there.”
Harman, who has finished in the top 10 in all five of his PGA Tour events in the early stages of the 2017-18 season, sank a 17-foot eagle putt while finishing his second round on the ninth hole and posted a 36-hole score of 13-under 127.
John Peterson carded birdies on six of the first nine holes en route to a 64 and is tied for second with Tom Hoge, who had a 65, Taylor Gooch, who birdied two of his last three holes for a 66, and first-round co-leaders Zach Johnson and Chris Kirk, who both wound up at 67.
Patton Kizzire birdied his last three holes to card a 64 and is four shots behind in a tie for sixth with Ollie Schneiderjans, who had a 65, and Kyle Stanley, who wound up at 67.
Xander Schauffele of La Jolla and San Diego Sate birdied his last four holes to shoot 64 and is another stroke back in a tie for 10th with Kevin Kisner, who birdied two of his last three in another 64.
Defending champion and third-ranked Justin Thomas recorded a second straight 67 and is seven down in a tie for 17th, while second-ranked Jordan Spieth shot 68 and is 10 behind in a tie for 48th.
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