Date: April 05, 2014
Author: Dejan Kalinic, Omnisport

Garcia surges into Houston Open lead

Sergio Garcia carded a stunning seven-under 65 to grab a one-shot lead at the halfway mark of the Houston Open on Friday.

The Spanish world number eight produced a bogey-free round at the Golf Club of Houston to move into 12 under.

On yet another good day for scoring in Texas, Garcia is a shot clear of American Matt Kuchar (67) in what could be an entertaining weekend battle at the PGA Tour event.

Australian Matt Jones (68) is alongside the United States' Cameron Tringale (68), Shawn Stefani (69) and Jimmy Walker (65) at eight under.

Garcia started on the back nine and he made a dream beginning to his second round.

The 34-year-old birdied the 12th and 14th holes while producing an eagle at the 13th to be four under through five.

A hat-trick of birdies from the third to the fifth completed an equal day best round for Garcia.

"I do feel like I'm playing nicely," Garcia said.

"I feel very comfortable with my equipment. I feel comfortable with myself in and outside the golf course.

"But I definitely don't feel like I'm hitting the ball the best I've hit it. I feel like I'm still struggling a little bit with my draw sometimes, to have enough confidence to hit it once in awhile."

A bogey at the 18th cost Kuchar a share of the lead after a round which had included six birdies, four of which came on the back nine.

Jones' only blemish came at the par-fourth fifth, while Tringale went through bogey-free.

Stefani's rollercoaster round included six birdies and three bogeys and Walker's only bogey came at the sixth.

Americans Steve Stricker (69) and Ben Curtis (70) are tied for seventh at seven under, a shot ahead of Ryan Palmer (68), Jason Gore (71), Jim Renner (72) and Phil Mickelson (70).

Rory McIlroy's solid showing continued with a one-under 71 that left him at three under and tied for 28th.

Missing the even-par cut were the likes of Jordan Spieth, Louis Oosthuizen and defending champion DA Points (all +1).