Sony Open 2019: Matt Kuchar Shoots 63 to Take 36-Hole Lead over Andrew Putnam

Kyle Newport@@KyleNewportFeatured ColumnistJanuary 12, 2019

HONOLULU, HI - JANUARY 11:  Matt Kuchar of the United States plays his shot from the seventh tee during the second round of the Sony Open In Hawaii at Waialae Country Club on January 11, 2019 in Honolulu, Hawaii.  (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

The 2019 Sony Open reached the midway point at Waialae Country Club in Honolulu on Friday, and Matt Kuchar heads into the weekend with the lead.

Kuchar carded a 63 in Round 2 to move to 14 under for the tournament, giving him a one-shot lead heading into Saturday. Andrew Putnam is in second at 13 under.

Below is a look at Friday's action in Hawaii.

                                       

2019 Sony Open Standings — Second Round

1. Matt Kuchar 63 (-14)

2. Andrew Putnam 65 (-13)

T3. Chez Reavie 65 (-10)

T3. Stewart Cink 62 (-10)

T5. Ted Potter Jr. 65 (-9)

T5. Marc Leishman 64 (-9)

T7. Hudson Swafford 67 (-8)

T7. Shugo Imahira 67 (-8)

T9. Keith Mitchell 65 (-7)

T9. Keegan Bradley 65 (-7)

T9. Sebastian Munoz 65 (-7)

*Full leaderboard can be viewed on the PGA Tour's official website.

                

Recap

Matt Kuchar had no interest in waiting until moving day to make his climb to the top of the leaderboard.

A seven-under 63 in Round 1 had the 40-year-old in third place entering Friday, just two shots back of the lead. Well, a second consecutive 63 helped him grab control of the tournament.

Kuchar couldn't have asked for a much better start to the day. He birdied his first three holes and four of the first five on the back nine to put the rest of the field on notice. A bogey on 15 cooled him off a bit, but an eagle on 18 helped him regain the momentum. 

And with two birdies and a bogey-free front nine, he was 14-under for the tournament.

Per PGA Tour Communications, Kuchar accomplished something no one had done for a few years:

"To shoot seven under back-to-back is unexpected but awfully excited [sic]," Kuchar said after Round 2, per the Associated Press' Doug Ferguson (via Yahoo.com).

Kuchar was hardly the only golfer to find a groove Friday, though.

Stewart Cink was one of the top performers, climbing 26 spots on the leaderboard and putting himself in contention with an eight-under 62. After managing just two birdies in the opening round, the 45-year-old piled up an impressive nine birdies. A bogey on the No. 3 hole kept him from a flawless performance, but he heads into the clubhouse in good position.

Kuchar and Cink may have had the best overall rounds Friday, but Chez Reavie may have stood out the most—and it's all thanks to a trio of eagles.

The PGA Tour noted Reavie made some history with that performance:

"I was trying to think back to any round I even had more than one hole-out and I couldn't think of any," Reavie said afterward, per Ben Everill of the PGA Tour's official website. "Honestly, I didn't think about it at all until after the third one went in. ... I need to go buy a lottery ticket today."

A bogey and a double bogey kept Reavie from keeping pace with Kuchar, but the 37-year-old remains within striking distance at four strokes back.

Meanwhile, Adam Svensson was unable to carry Thursday's momentum into Friday. A 61 in the opening round gave Svensson the lead after 18 holes, but he tumbled 19 spots down the leaderboard after suffering a seven-bogey 74 in Round 2.

Svensson now sits nine shots back of the lead.

Of note, Jordan Spieth finished the day at one under for the tournament following a 66 on Friday. That puts him one shot below the projected cut line.

Thirty-six holes are in the books, but with two more rounds to play, there should be plenty of action to keep an eye on as the weekend progresses.

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