Sony Open 2018: Brian Harman Takes over 1st Place After Round 2

Adam Wells@adamwells1985Featured ColumnistJanuary 13, 2018

HONOLULU, HI - JANUARY 12:  Brian Harman of the United States plays his shot from the first tee during round two of the Sony Open In Hawaii at Waialae Country Club on January 12, 2018 in Honolulu, Hawaii.  (Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)
Gregory Shamus/Getty Images

Brian Harman moved into sole possession of the lead at the 2018 Sony Open after firing a 63 in Friday's second round, dropping his 36-hole score to 13-under par. 

Starting the day in third place, Harman jumped up two spots thanks to six birdies and an eagle on his final hole. He has a three-shot lead over a group of five players including Zach Johnson, John Peterson, Tom Hoge, Talor Gooch and Chris Kirk. 

Here's the full leaderboard after two rounds of golf from Hawaii:

Harman is having quite the run in his last 13 rounds of golf after Friday, via PGA Tour:

The 30-year-old appears poised to take a huge step forward on the PGA Tour. He's finished in the top 10 in each of his first four tournaments this season, with a fifth well within reach. 

Harman's only drawback at this point is winning events. He has just two career victories, with his most recent one coming at the Wells Fargo Championship last May. 

Before the Sony Open, Harman told Steve DiMeglio of USA Today he hasn't changed his expectations this year:

"Obviously, the natural response is to say, 'Yeah, I’m excited. I'm going to have a big year.' But I'm not able to predict any of those things. The only thing I'm worried about is going through my routine and getting ready for Hawaii and prepare as well as I can for the next tournament.

"I've always had pretty high expectations of myself. But I wouldn't say that my expectations are any higher. I've learned that super high expectations lead to big disappointments. So if I can just stay focused on what I want to do, that helps me to stay in the present."

It's still early in 2018, but whatever Harman is doing to stay in the present has paid off for him. 

Seven different players finished within one shot of matching Harman's 63 in the second round. Peterson is the most prominent member of that group, using his 64 to climb nine spots into a tie for second place. 

Peterson appeared like he might be in for a historic day. The Texas native made the turn with a 29 that included six birdies, but was unable to keep up that pace on the back nine, shooting an even-par 35. 

Peterson hasn't won a professional tournament since 2012 on the Adams Tour. He's given himself a strong chance to end that drought with two more good days of golf. 

Jordan Spieth likely won't play a role in the outcome of this tournament at three-under par through two rounds. He did provide one of the best highlights of this early PGA Tour season with a 91-foot birdie putt on the fifth hole, via PGA Tour:

Per PGA Tour Media, the longest prior putt of Spieth's career was 52 feet at the 2016 Valspar Championship. 

Harman is in control right now, though his three-stroke lead is hardly insurmountable on this course. A total of 15 players shot 65 or better on Friday, so expect to see the low scores keep coming on moving day as the field looks to shake things up. 

Related

    Furyk: Tiger's Win Boost for US Team

    Golf logo
    Golf

    Furyk: Tiger's Win Boost for US Team

    RyderCup.com
    via RyderCup.com

    Was Tiger's Win the Greatest Comeback in Sports History?

    Golf logo
    Golf

    Was Tiger's Win the Greatest Comeback in Sports History?

    Golf
    via Golf

    A Lot Has Changed Since Last Overseas U.S. Ryder Cup Win

    Golf logo
    Golf

    A Lot Has Changed Since Last Overseas U.S. Ryder Cup Win

    RyderCup.com
    via RyderCup.com

    Europe Is Ready for Tiger, U.S. Challenge

    Golf logo
    Golf

    Europe Is Ready for Tiger, U.S. Challenge

    RyderCup.com
    via RyderCup.com