England's Matt Wallace fired a six-under par 66 to seize the lead after the second round of the PGA Corales Puntacana Championship in the Dominican Republic / © GETTY IMAGES NORTH AMERICA/AFP/File
England's Matt Wallace, a four-time European Tour winner chasing his first PGA title, birdied his last three holes to grab the lead after Friday's second round of the Corales Puntacana Championship.
Wallace fired a bogey-free six-under par 66 to stand on 11-under 133 after 36 holes at the Dominican Republic resort, one stroke ahead of Americans Wyndham Clark and Sam Stevens, who each shot 65.
Wallace began on the back nine and birdied the par-3 11th and par-5 12th. He birdied the par-5 fourth and seventh holes then closed with birdies at the par-4 eighth and par-3 ninth to seize the lead.
"It's nice to have that in the bank now and confidence has grown," Wallace said. "All these shots are just logging into the book. It's just memory for the next two days, so good start."
The tournament offers a prime chance for a first-time PGA winner with most of the tour's top talent at this week's WGC Match Play Championship in Austin, Texas.
Stevens, chasing his first top-10 finish in only his 16th PGA Tour start, had eight birdies against a lone bogey.
Clark, who had five birdies and an eagle, had his best finish with a playoff loss at the 2020 Bermuda Championship.
Sharing fourth on 136 were Denmark's Nicolai Hojgaard and Americans Tyler Duncan, Akshay Bhatia and 18-hole co-leader Brice Garnett, who took his only PGA triumph in 2018 at Puntacana.