RIO GRANDE, Puerto Rico (AP) — Brandon Wu birdied the final two holes for a 5-under 67 and the second-round lead Friday in the PGA Tour’s Puerto Rico Open.
Wu played the back nine in 4 under at windy Grand Reserve. He birdied the par-4 12th, par-5 15th, par-4 17th and par-5 18th to reach 11-under 133.
“It was kind of a grind,” Wu said. “I missed a short putt kind of early on in the round, made a bogey I think on my fourth hole. I kind of just had to keep my head down and play well on the back.”
The 24-year-old former Stanford player got into the field through the Korn Ferry Tour points list. He won the Korn Ferry Tour Championship in August, and tied for 14th last week in Florida in the first Korn Ferry event since early October.
“I think my game is in a good place,” Wu said. ”It was good to see kind of the things I worked on during the offseason paying off. I did well last week, so that definitely gave me some confidence coming into this week.”
Greg Chalmers was a stroke back after a 68. The 47-year-old Australian also birdied his final two holes, the par-3 eighth and par-4 ninth. He had a hole-in-one on No. 8 in the opening round.
“The wind was really blowing,” Chalmers said. “I didn’t have the greatest control, and my short game really held me in good stead. I made some nice saves from sort of 6, 8 feet for par. It’s a little tricky to putt when the wind is blowing like this. And then I hung in there and started to see some better swings and better shots going into the back nine.”
Home star Rafael Campos and South Africa’s Branden Grace were 9 under.
Campos rebounded from a bogey on 17 with a birdie on 18 for a 69.
“I think I was just getting a little ahead of myself and I was missing a little bit to the right,” Campos said. “But I was missing in the correct spots. I really was. Which I’m happy with that today. I really never gave myself that many looks to score better, but I managed to deal with the situations as good as I could.”
Grace shot 68.
Jhonattan Vegas (68) and Cameron Percy (69) were 8 under.
First-round leader Tommy Gainey followed his opening 65 with a 76 to enter the weekend at 3 under. Ian Poulter, the top-ranked player in the field at 59th, also was 3 under after a 70.
The tournament is being played opposite the World Golf Championship event in Florida. The winner will get into the PGA Championship in May but not the Masters in April.