Daily Wrap-up: Round 2, Puerto Rico Open

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March 09, 2012
Staff and wire reports

RIO GRANDE, Puerto Rico -- Matt Jones shot a 5-under 67 in windy conditions Friday to open a three-stroke lead over George McNeill in the PGA TOUR's Puerto Rico Open presented by seepuertorico.com.

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Jones, tied with McNeill for the first-round lead, had a bogey-free round to reach 11-under 133 on the Trump International course. The Australian is winless on the PGA TOUR.

"I've been putting really well and chipping unbelievably well," Jones said. "My ball-striking was much better yesterday. I missed a few greens today."

The wind increased throughout the day, gusting to 23 mph (37 kph) in the afternoon.

"It started to kick up maybe around the eighth, ninth hole, but compared to yesterday, I didn't really feel it," Jones said. "Growing up in Australia, we're used to playing in the wind. It's nothing uncommon, and I actually, more often than not, enjoy playing in the wind because it makes you not worry about score so much. You worry about hitting the shots one shot at a time, and you play a little smarter."

McNeill had a 70.

Japanese star Ryo Ishikawa, playing the event for the first time after failing to qualify for the World Golf Championships-Cadillac Championship at Doral, was four strokes back at 7 under after a 67.

Shot of the Day

Jeff Overton holes a birdie chip on No. 16.

"Short game today was very good, and approach shots and putting," Ishikawa said. "Everything went well. That resulted in birdies and some nice par saves. So, the short game was the key thing."

He also played in the calmer morning conditions.

"I was lucky, but as I progressed toward the end, the wind got stronger and the conditions got tougher," Ishikawa said. "But under the strong wind conditions, I understood the difficulty of the course better. So I appreciate the design of the course more now."

Todd Hamilton shot a 69 to join Ishikawa at 7 under.

"I'm pleased with the way I've played," Hamilton said. "I haven't played very well for a long, long time, and it's nice to see not just a good nine holes, but a good 18 that I had yesterday and then another good 18 the following day."

Andres Romero (67) was 6 under along with Boo Weekley (68), Kevin Stadler (69), Daniel Summerhays (70), Roberto Castro (69) and Kevin Kisner (70).

Trump International: Friday
EASIEST HOLE TOUGHEST HOLE
The par-5 2nd hole was the easiest with a Friday scoring average of 4.626.
EAGLES: 2 BIRDIES: 62 PARS: 52 BOGEYS: 13 OTHERS: 2
The par-4 4th hole was the toughest with a Friday scoring average of 4.313.
EAGLES: 0 BIRDIES: 40 PARS: 80
BOGEYS: 11 OTHERS: 0
About the leader
• Last year Jones finished 127th on the FedExCup standings, the third time in four years he just missed the PGA TOUR Playoffs. He finished 127th in 2008 and 126th in 2009. The top 125 qualify for the Playoffs. He has a similar story on the money list where he has finished just outside the top 125 on the final money list three of the last four years (135/2008, 134/2009 and 133/2011).
• Jones is making only his fourth start on TOUR. He missed his last two cuts coming into this week.
• Jones held a share of the second-round lead at the 2009 Puerto Rico Open after firing a 64 in round two. In round three he shot a 79 and ended up finishing T44. His only other second-round lead came at the 2010 Valero Texas Open (T22).
• Jones is making his 105th career start on the PGA TOUR.
• Jones' and his wife Melissa are expecting their first child in May.

Michael Bradley, the winner in 2009 and 2011, was 1 under after a 71.

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