Ishikawa leads on a day Tiger roars

Ryo Ishikawa of Japan birdied the last three holes to take a one-stroke lead over Rickie Fowler and Kevin Chappell after two rounds of the Quicken Loans National on a day tournament host Tiger Woods made a run up the leaderboard at Robert Trent Jones Golf Club in Gainesville, Va.

The 23-year-old Ishikawa, who has won 12 times as a pro but not on the PGA Tour, followed his opening 8-under-par 63 with a 68 that included seven birdies.

“It wasn’t a great round through 15, but I hit it great 9-iron into 16, par 3,” said Ishikawa, who aced the fourth hole in the first round and left that shot on the 16th in the second round two inches short. “It was great shot. (On)
17, my second shot, and obviously (a 31-foot birdie putt on) 18 putting, it was a great three shots. I’m looking forward to the next two days.

“You know, I’m still 135, 140 on the FedEx Cup (standings), so I need something like good number, good points. My goal is going to be 15-under, 16 under (for the tournament), but I’m not sure how many guys are coming up
the next two days. So I just want to focus on my number.”

Chappell, the 2008 NCAA individual champion from Fresno and UCLA, followed a 64 with a 68 to share second with Fowler, from Murrieta, who had five birdies on the back nine in a round of 65.

David Lingmerth of Sweden, who captured the Memorial in June for his first PGA Tour victory, was two shots back in solo fourth after collecting his seventh birdie of the day with a 20-foot putt on his final hole, No. 9, to cap a 65.

Woods, who twice has won this tournament that benefits the Tiger Woods Foundation, had six birdies and a single bogey in a 66 to follow his opening 68. He posted consecutive rounds of 68 or better in the first two rounds since the 2013 Deutsche Bank Championship during the FedEx Cup playoffs.

“If I keep hitting good putts, eventually they’re going to go in,” said Woods, who sank a 36-foot birdie putt on the eighth hole. “I made my share on my back nine and especially that bomb on 8. That was a bit lucky, but I’ll take it.

“I know what I’m doing out there. It’s just a matter of time before things start to click in. People want the immediate fix, the one tip that’s going to work for the rest of their life. It doesn’t work that way.”

Woods was three strokes behind in a tie for fifth with Jimmy Walker (63), Pat Perez (67) of San Diego, Greg Owen (68) of England, Charles Howell III (67), Whee Kim (66) of South Korea, Brice Garnett (65), Jason Bohn (67) and Danny Lee (67) of New Zealand.

Defending champion Justin Rose of England shot 71 and was five shots back in a tie for 19th.

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