POTOMAC, Md. – Beau Hossler took the lead this weekend in search of his first PGA Tour win, and gets another chance at Quicken Loans National.
Like Tiger Woods.
Hossler, the 23-year-old in his first full year on the tour, birded four of his last five holes and ended up with a 35-foot birdie putt on No. 18 for a 4-under 66, giving him a share at the lead with Ryan Armor and Brian Gay.
Armor (65) and Gay (64) each made short birdies on the third hole of the par-3 to finish their rounds and tie lead.
Woods ended a steaming morning at the TPC Potomac near Avenel with two pars that felt the same size. On a day when he made seven birdies – all but two of fifteen feet or more ̵
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& # 39; & # 39; I'm not that far back, "said Woods. "The scores will not be so low and it's going to be a tough weekend, it's going to be over 100 degrees and it will be a long weekend mentally and physically I'm in a good position now."
Hossler has been in for the third time at least a portion of the 36-hole lead this year, and he had a close stint at the Houston Open and lost in a playoff against Ian Poulter. He shot in 21 of his last 38 rounds in the 60s.
& # 39; & # 39; I had a lot of very good laps. Unfortunately, I had some kind of high, which is untypical for me, "said Hossler." I think that was six times in a row in the 60s, so I'm fine. I get it nicely from the tea and play the putter very well, so it obviously helps.
They were 9 under 131, one hit ahead of Francesco Molinari (65) and Billy Horschel (68) .Molinari, who plays the Quicken Loans National and John Deere Classic with hopes of boosting his FedEx Cup stand, hit everyone 18 greens in regulation.
Woods was among 20 players separated by four shots expected to hit the weekend as hot as ever along the Potomac River.
The course was fourth-hardest last year rated on the PGA Tour list behind only three majors, though the greens on Friday remained mostly receptive under a blazing sun.
& # 39; & # 39; I think the course has become a little bit down at the end of the day changed, "Horschel said after graduation in the afternoon. "I think the circuit is going to be a bit hard, a bit faster, but I do not think it will be anywhere else than last year, so I think you can still go out there and score points Turn two more laps in the '60s to see where we are for Sunday. "
Hossler had a 66 at the Travelers Championship on Sunday to finish second behind Bubba Watson. He started his big goal by driving through the green at the accessible 14th place for a simple up-and-down birdie, stuffing his access to 3 feet to the next hole, and then picking up the water on the right side of the green Par-3 17th and hit 6 feet for birdie.
Gay started in the back nine and opened with five birdies in eight holes before his momentum slowed. Armor, who played in the same group, had only one birdie in 10 holes until he finished with four birdies on the front nine.
& # 39; & # 39; Brian made such a hot start, you just wanted to keep up & # 39; & # 39; Said Armor. "You just tried not to fall too far behind him, and if you do, you'd probably be near the leadership."
Rickie Fowler, the only player from the top 10 in the world to play this week, shot a 66 and was five shots behind in the group.
Woods made no putt over 8 feet in the opening round. He started Friday with a 25-foot birdie putt on par-5 10 and following a bogey from danger to the next hole, followed that up with an 18-foot birdie putt. His biggest shot on the 18th was 80 feet for Birdie when he made the turn. His favorite shot was a 3-wood that he hammered from 282 yards onto the green at the par 5-second hole for a two-putt birdie.
It added a 65 and a realistic chance into the weekend.
"I think I'm not far from putting it together where I can win," Woods said.