It’s hard to argue that anyone has started the 2017-’18 season better than Brian Harman, already having finished in the top 10 in all four of his starts, including last week’s solo third finish at the Sentry Tournament of Champions. While he hasn’t converted any of them into wins, at this point it just seems like matter of time before he notches the third of his career.
It might even happen this week at the Sony Open in Hawaii, where Harman has continued his hot play by grabbing the 36-hole lead at 13-under 127 thanks to rounds of 64 and 63 at Waialae Country Club. The lefty heads to the weekend in full control of his game, especially on the greens, where he’s made 14 birdies and an eagle over the first two days.
“I’m making putts, but I’m also putting myself in position to make those putts,” Harman said. “I’m getting a bunch of looks. I’m not making everything I’m looking at, but I’m hitting a lot of good putts and made a few today.”
The biggest putt the Georgia alum made all day came on his final hole, the par-5 ninth, where he buried a 16-footer for eagle to make up for his only bogey of the day two holes prior at the par 3 seventh.
“Everybody’s going to make bogeys. It happens. That was an unfortunate one,” he said. “But I played eight nicely and hit a good drive on nine. I think that definitely helps going into tomorrow.”
Five players are three back of Harman’s lead, including Zach Johnson, who carded a three-under 67 that also featured an eagle on the par-5 ninth, his from 27 feet. The two-time major champion has now played his last 10 rounds in 40 under at Waialae. He’s joined at 10-under 130 by Chris Kirk, John Peterson, Tom Hoge and Talor Gooch.
Patton Kizzire, Ollie Schniederjans and Kyle Stanley are all tied for seventh at nine-under 131.
Defending champion Justin Thomas is seven back at six-under 134 after firing a pair of 67s on Thursday and Friday. Three shots behind him is Jordan Spieth, whose two-under 68 was just enough to stick around for the weekend at three-under 137.