Saxon, Alker share WinCo Foods Portland Open lead
Hot-shooting Charlie Saxon and Steve Alker shared the lead after the second round of the WinCo Foods Portland Open at Pumpkin Ridge Golf Club in North Plains.
Saxon shot 7-under 64 and Alker 6-under 65 on the Witch Hollow course Friday to sit atop the leaderboard of the Korn Ferry Tour with scores of 9-under 133.
Ryan Ruffels, one of two golfers to shoot a low round of 8-under 63 on Friday, was one stroke back along with Lee Hodges.
From Tulsa, Oklahoma, the 27-year-old Saxon has won more than $2.2 million since turning pro in 2015. He's won $36,814 this year, and registered one top-10 finish.
Saxon carded six consecutive birdies for his 64.
"I think my previous best (this year) going into this week was two birdies in a row, so I'll definitely take six," Saxon said. "It was fun. I was hitting good golf shots and the putter got going a little bit. It's kind of the stretch I've been waiting on all year."
Beginning at the 10th hole, Saxon bogeyed his first and last holes but tallied nine birdies in between to record his lowest round of the year. He became the sixth player this season to count six birdies in a row with circles on hole Nos. 14-1.
Alker, 49 and from New Zealand, joined the Korn Ferry Tour in 2002. He's a four-time winner on tour with more than $2.2 million in career earnings. He's made $18,946 this year, with one top-25 finish.
Alker carded a bogey-free round on Friday.
"I kept bogeys off the card today and made some nice saves," Alker said. "That always keeps the round going. Yesterday was sort of topsy-turvy; I threw a hole-in-one in there but also had a couple of sixes. It was quite a mixed bag. But today I was more committed to the shots and putted well."
The first-round leader was Drew Weaver, and he fell five shots back (4-under) after carding a 2-over 73 in the second round.
Will Zalatoris, who's No. 2 in points and money, is at 3-under after a 6-under-65 Friday.
Along with Ruffels, Rick Lamb also shot an 8-under 63.
Missing the cut was Medford's Dylan Wu and former Oregon prep golfer Robert Garrigus, as well as last week's Korn Ferry Tour winner Seth Reeves. The 36-hole cut fell at 1-under — three strokes higher than last year's tournament (4-under).
The tournament's purse is $800,000, with $144,000 going to the champion.
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