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Day's long-range putts keep him atop board

ORLANDO — Jason Day felt like he was bearing down on each shot. He made it look much easier Friday in the Arnold Palmer Invitational.

Day made two long birdie putts and otherwise put on a clinic at Bay Hill for a round of 7-under 65 that gave him a two-shot lead over Henrik Stenson going into the weekend.

"It was great," he said. "I felt like I couldn't do anything wrong out there."

He was at 13-under 131, five shots up on Jamie Lovemark (68) when he finished.

Stenson faced a daunting task — eight shots behind when he teed off in the afternoon — but shot 31 on the back nine for 66. Justin Rose also carded 66 and was three shots behind.

"It's motivating," Stenson said of his deficit. "You can't let it be frustrating that you're eight shots back."

Day, Stenson and Rose will play together today because tee times were moved forward to avoid the threat of storms.

Rory McIlroy, who opened with 75, was in the group behind Day and saw the Australian start to pull away from the field. McIlroy had his own issues on Friday but took care of them to shoot 67, making the cut.

Pak retiring: Se Ri Pak is leaving the LPGA Tour at the end of the season. "It's pretty hard to make decision to be retiring, but it's a time for me to be," Pak said. The 38-year-old Hall of Famer is playing her first event in nine months at the JTBC Founders Cup in Phoenix, where she was tied for 25th after a round of 68 put her at 7-under 137 total. Pak inspired a wave of South Korean women to play and a fellow South Korean, Sei Young Kim, led after two rounds after shooting 66 for 129 total, two strokes ahead of Brittany Lang.

Olazabal out of Masters: Two-time Masters champion Jose Maria Olazabal will not play this year at Augusta for an unspecified health reason. Olazabal, 50, has not competed this season.

Champions: Tampa native Woody Austin had six birdies in a seven-hole stretch and shot 7-under 65 to lead by one shot after one round in the Tucson (Ariz.) Conquistadores Classic.

Day's long-range putts keep him atop board 03/18/16 [Last modified: Friday, March 18, 2016 10:02pm]
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