Kirk Triplett birdied six of his first 10 holes Friday en route to a 7-under-par 65 and a one-shot lead after two rounds of the $1.5 million Greater Greensboro Open.
Triplett, from Pullman, has finished second three times in six seasons on the PGA Tour. He had a two-round total of 11-under-par 133, one shot off the midway mark set in 1986 by Sandy Lyle over the 6,958-yard Forest Oaks Country Club course.
“I was at the hotel this morning and the wind was blowing pretty hard. My hotel is kind of on top of a hill, and driving out here I thought it was going to be a pretty tough day,” Triplett said. “I thought the greens would really be getting firm.
“But I saw some reasonable scores in the morning and, getting off to a fast start like I did, I was thinking low numbers all the way.”
Peter Jacobsen, second on the money list and the only multiple winner this season after 15 events, was one stroke back at 10-under 134 after a 65. His round was buoyed by two chip-in birdies from sand traps.
“That’s the kind of stuff you dream about,” Jacobsen said of his sand shots on Nos. 13 and 16.
The wind kicked up early after a calm day Thursday when 37 players shot in the 60s, but scores didn’t suffer much as Jeff Sluman added a 65 and Brad Bryant and John Adams had 66s.
Sluman, Bryant and Hal Sutton were at 135 and Adams was at 136 with Brad Faxon and Steve Lowery, two of three first-day leaders. Faxon and Lowery each had 71s Friday.
Sutton, who has missed four straight cuts and six of 10, had a 68.
Vijay Singh, the other first-round leader, had an even-par 72 and was at 7-under 137 along with Davis Love III and Lee Janzen. Love, the leading money winner on the tour, couldn’t get it going Friday and shot 71.
Bryant and Faxon got to 10-under at one point, but Bryant bogeyed the par-3 17th and Faxon lost shots on 11 and 12 when he was unable to get up and down from the sand.
Bryant has finished second seven times in his career, including last year’s GGO.
Triplett, starting on the back side in the afternoon, birdied Nos. 11-14, including a chip-in from 30 feet on the difficult par-3 12th. He also sank a 30-foot putt on No. 18 for birdie and a 50-footer on No. 1.
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