Travelers Championship

TPC River Highlands


Turnesa, Kuchar Share 36-Hole Lead

October 16, 2008

Turnesa dropped one in the water on 17, but made up for it with an eagle on 18.

LAS VEGAS (AP) -- Marc Turnesa holed out from 159 yards for eagle on the par-4 18th hole to offset a 17th-hole double bogey and maintain a share of the lead Friday in the Justin Timberlake Shriners Hospitals for Children Open.

Tied for the first-round lead, Turnesa followed his opening 62 with a 64 to match Matt Kuchar at 18-under 126 -- one off the PGA Tour's 36-hole records for total score and relation to par. Kuchar had his second straight 63 at TPC Summerlin.

Zach Johnson, the other first-round leader after winning the Texas Open last week, was third at 17 under after a 65 in sunny, calm conditions. The

Turnesa, a PGA Tour rookie, birdied Nos. 14-16, then dropped two strokes on the par-3 17th after hitting into the water. He got the strokes back on 18 with the eagle after a 300-yard drive.

"I hit a bad shot on 17 and made double," Turnesa said. "Then, on 18, I hit a good shot and got a little lucky as well, and it went in the hole.

"I was a little disappointed but there is so much golf to be played. I was just trying to put a good swing on it on 18 and get it in the fairway and make birdie when I put it in the fairway, so I was a bit surprised. I mean, it looked good. I knew in the air it was going to be close. So when I heard the crowd, it was a good feeling."

Kuchar, who missed the cuts in his last seven starts, had nine birdies -- five on his last seven holes -- in his bogey-free round.

"It's not often when you can follow up a 63 with another 63," Kuchar said. "To do that was a lot of fun today. There were no bogeys today, and that's a nice thing to not have on your card.

"You've got a stretch there of definitely some birdie opportunities -- a drivable par 4, a reachable par 5, and I strung together a couple other nice ones. That last one, at 18, I hit a 7-iron from about 180 to, gosh, a foot and a half.

"I think the last one was the most fun, putting it to a foot and a half. I had made my only bogey yesterday on 18. It was good to get back with a birdie today."

Pat Perez (63), John Mallinger (64) and Ken Duke (66) were 15 under, Canadian Open winner Chez Reavie, former UNLV star Ryan Moore (64) and Chris Stroud (65) followed at 14 under, and Rich Beem (65) and Nick Watney (68) were 13 under.

"You've just got to make putts on these greens," Beem said. "It's just a putting contest out here this week much more so than anything else because the golf course is really good. There's nothing out here. No wind. The pins have actually been fairly easy, which I think is great for the PGA Tour staff to do that.

"Let's make birdies. Who cares if we shoot 28-under par. That's the nature of the game. Hopefully, they'll keep doing the same thing."

John Daly missed the cut by a stroke, shooting a 66 to finish at 5 under.