March 15 2013
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.