Michael Putnam shot a bogey-free 7-under-par 64 and took a one-stroke lead over Shawn Stefani and Jason Bohn midway through the OHL Classic at Mayakoba at El Camaleon Golf Club in Playa del Carmen, Mexico.
Putnam, who played at Pepperdine, carded five birdies in the first eight holes and added two more coming home, including a 20-foot putt on the 18th hole.
“We teed off at 6:15 (a.m.) and it was pretty calm,” said Putnam, whose only three pro victories came on the Web.com Tour, including two in 2013. “What wind there was came from the opposite direction, so there were some holes playing downwind and I was able to make some birdies.
“I kept the ball between the trees, which you’ve gotta to here, and made some nice putts, especially on No. 18. Hopefully, I can have a good weekend.”
Jason Bohn posted a bogey-free 65 and was tied for second with Shawn Stefani, who also had a 65.
Ken Duke birdied four of the last six holes to card the low round of the tournament, a bogey-free 63, and was alone in fourth.
Nicholas Thompson recorded a bogey-free 65 and was tied for fifth with David Hearn of Canada, who also had a 65, Alex Cejka of Germany, who totaled 67, and Will Mackenzie, who came in at 68.
Jason Gore of Valencia shot 66 and was tied for ninth with Bruce Garnett (68), Daniel Summerhays (65), Charley Hoffman (68), Fred Funk (65), Blayne Barber (68) and Steve Wheatcroft (69).