NEWTOWN SQUARE, Pa. — Justin Rose was happy to be leading the AT&T National, especially because it was only five days ago that he threw away a chance for a win with a surprising meltdown in the final round.
Tiger Woods? He's happy still to be playing.
Rose was bogey-free and wound up Friday with the best score of the tournament, 6-under 64, to build a one-shot lead at 7-under 133 over Jason Day and Charlie Wi going at Aronimink Golf Club.
Woods, who won this event last year at Congressional, hit the ball well for a second straight day. He again got nothing out of it and missed a 30-inch putt late in the round that brought him back to 70. He was at 3-over 143, which made the cut on the number.
"I'm driving it on a string … and that's fun," Woods said. "But if you don't make putts, no matter how good you hit the golf ball, you're not going to shoot good scores."
Rose said his round was helped by being in the same group with Sean O'Hair (68) and J.B. Holmes (69), who played well. They combined for 13 birdies and one bogey over the 54 holes they played collectively.
For Rose, the timing could not have been better.
In his first tournament since winning the Memorial on June 6, Rose had a three-shot lead Sunday at the Travelers Championship in Cromwell, Conn., when it all fell apart. He shot 39 on the back nine for 75 and tied for ninth.
"I turned up here Monday morning feeling like I was a better player than I was on Sunday, because you learn," he said. "My game doesn't go away overnight. You have an experience like that, and if you ask yourself the right questions, and if you deal with it in the right way, you become better."
LPGA: Na Yeon Choi followed her opening 7-under 64 with 67 for a two-stroke lead at the Jamie Farr Owens Corning Classic in Sylvania, Ohio. Choi has needed just 53 putts in 36 holes to get to 11-under 131 at Highland Meadows Golf Club. South Korean compatriot Inbee Park (66) was tied for second with Christina Kim (67) and Canadian Alena Sharp (68). Tampa resident Kristy McPherson holed a 60-degree wedge from 75 yards on No. 18 for eagle and 68 to lead a pack of six players at 6 under. Seminole's Brittany Lincicome, who opened with 68, struggled in the second round and shot 74, making the cut on the number at 142.
Champions: Tom Wargo shot 7-under 65 — the first time he has bettered his age on the tour — for a share of the first-round lead in the inaugural Montreal Championship in Blainville, Quebec. The 67-year-old, who won the last of his four tour titles in 2000, shot a bogey-free round to match Russ Cochran atop the leaderboard and also tie the course record. Jay Don Blake, Joey Sindelar, John Cook, Tom Purtzer, Jay Haas and James Mason opened with 66s. Fred Couples shot 69.