By Jeff Shain, PGATOUR.COM contributor
PALM HARBOR, Fla. – One day after posting his first overnight PGA TOUR lead, Shawn Stefani has a chance for a second after a 1-under-par 70 at the Tampa Bay Championship left him one shot ahead of Adam Scott.
Stefani drained a 14-foot putt at No. 13 for the last of his three birdies, reaching the halfway checkpoint at 7 under. Scott sizzled with five birdies in a bogey-free 66.
“To go bogey-free anywhere is good,” Scott said, “and I think [to do it] here is particularly good. It’s quite a tricky golf course, and mistakes are easily made.”
Ask Harris English and Brian Harman, who for the second straight day stumbled on their finishing holes. English bogeyed No. 9 to post a 69 and Harman did likewise at the 18th for a 70, leaving them two shots off the pace at 5-under.
The former University of Georgia teammates were part of a four-way tie for third, alongside Jason Dufner (66) and Tag Ridings (through nine holes).
Jordan Spieth, runner-up at last week’s Puerto Rico Open presented by seepuertorico.com, was in striking distance again after a 68 pushed him to three shots off the lead. Also there is Erik Compton, the heart-transplant pro whose 65 was the day’s best and jumped him 98 spots on the leaderboard.
Defending champion Luke Donald was among those in the afternoon wave, trying to bounce back from an opening 70 in which he bogeyed three of his final four holes. Other afternoon notables include U.S. Open titleholder Webb Simpson, Sergio Garcia, Jim Furyk and two-time Tampa champion K.J. Choi.
PALM HARBOR, Fla. -- Shawn Stefani shot a 1-under 70 in Friday's second round of the Tampa Bay Championship presented by EverBank. That left him at 7 under through 36 holes and the clubhouse leader midway through Friday.
Here's what Stefani said following his round:
THOUGHTS ON HIS ROUND: "Today was a little bit more of a struggle ball‑striking. Didn't really drive it super great. Didn't hit some of the best iron shots. But scrambled well and I putted really great. So you know, when you putt good, that usually keeps rounds going, and that was pretty much what happened today with the result of my 1‑under par."
NERVOUS AFTER BEING FIRST-ROUND LEADER?: "I wasn't any more nervous than I am any round. I think I'm always a little bit excited about playing and I get a little nervous, which I enjoy. I think that's the competitor in me. There wasn't really any time today where I got, you know, really nervous or excited I guess."
PERSPECTIVE GOING INTO SECOND ROUND: "I knew it was
Friday, and the lead is one thing, but leading on the weekend is another. And today I just wanted to go out
there and play golf and hit each shot the best I could and really have some
fun. That's really what I did. I really had a lot of fun out there today,
even though I didn't really play my best but I scrambled well. That was a lot of fun today."
To replay Stefani's round on Shot Tracker, click here
Shawn Stefani has just made a 14-footer for birdie at the 15th hole to regain sole possession of the lead that he held overnight at the Tampa Bay Championship presented by EverBank.
Adam Scott taken the clubhouse lead, though, after polishing off a round of 66 that moved him to 6 under. He's one behind Stefani and one ahead of Harris English, Brian Harman and Jason Dufner, who also shot 66 in the second round.
Jordan Spieth, the 19-year-old Texan who finished second last week at the Puerto Rico Open presented by seepuertorico.com, is also making a move. He's 4 under through 14 holes and tied or sixth at 3 under.
James Driscoll, who has two holes remaining, has one of the day's best rounds going. He's 5 under for the day and 2 under for the tournament.
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Adam Scott and Jason Dufner have made big moves up the leaderboard during Friday morning's second round of the Tampa Bay Championship presented by EverBank.
Both players are 4 under on their rounds, with Scott moving to 5 under for the tournament and Dufner to 4 under.
First-round leader Shawn Stefani remains the leader at 7 under. He's 1 under on his round through nine holes.
Scott is bogey-free through his first 13 holes, with three of his four birdies coming on the par 5s.
Dufner is also bogey-free through 13 holes.
But perhaps the hottest player on the course is Ben Kohles. He's 5 under on his round through his first nine holes. Kohles, who began his round off the 10th tee, opened with three consecutive birdies and already has six birdies in his round.