Driscoll vaults ahead in Puerto Rico
Rio Grande, PR (SportsNetwork.com) - James Driscoll fired a 9-under 63 on Friday to vault into a 1-stroke lead at the Puerto Rico Open.
Driscoll, who is seeking his first career win on the PGA Tour, finished 36 holes at Trump International Golf Club at 12-under-par 132.
"I had the putter going pretty hot today," Driscoll said. "The wind was pumping pretty good. It was blowing about 20 miles an hour, but there were a few times I had some crosswinds and just judged it perfectly and hit it in there to about a foot or so."
Chesson Hadley carded a 7-under 65 during his second round to move into second place at 11-under 133, while Eric Axley (66) is alone in third at minus-10.
Ben Martin (67), Wes Roach (66), Jonathan Byrd (66) and Danny Lee (68) shared fourth at 9-under.
Axley played in the morning wave and opened his round with three straight pars before rolling in a hat trick of birdies from the fourth to move to 7- under.
After parring his next three holes, he opened his back nine with another gain at the 10th.
A birdie at the 12th moved him to 9-under, but he gave that shot right back with a bogey at the 13th.
Axley would not drop another shot for the rest of the day and closed his round with birdies at the 15th and 18th to claim the clubhouse lead at minus-10.
"I'm playing solid, hitting a lot of greens right now, being patient, and getting a lot of them close to the hole," said Axley. "So putting's not been too difficult.
That mark stood throughout the day until Driscoll poured in back-to-back birdies at the 14th and 15th to reach 11-under.
Driscoll had earlier followed an opening par with a birdie at the second. He eagled the fifth to reach 6-under before converting another birdie at the eighth to make the turn at minus-7.
He then rolled in birdies at the 10th and 12th prior to surpassing Axley. He later closed with a birdie at the 18th to finish two clear at 12-under.
Hadley cut his advantage to just one in one of the final groups of the day.
He followed three straight birdies from the 12th, his third, with back-to-back bogeys at the 16th and 17th to fall back to 5-under.
Hadley birdied the 18th to make the turn at 6-under and made it two in a row at the first before recording an eagle at the second.
He added birdies at the fifth and seventh to end at 11-under.
NOTES: Driscoll's 63 tied the course record. He had already owned a share of the record with Derek Lamely, Chris Tidland, and Scott Brown with his 63 here in 2011 ... There was a 16-minute rain delay early Friday, marking the ninth of 17 events this season to have a suspension of play ... With 80 players making the cut at 1-under-par 143, there will be a second cut to the low 70 players and ties Saturday ... Hadley is the only rookie on the PGA Tour this season with two top-10 finishes, at the Shriners Hospitals for Children Open and Pebble Beach National Pro-Am.
03/07 18:56:14 ET