ATLANTA — Jim Furyk, the only American on the Ryder Cup team without a win this year, put himself in position Friday to join them.
Furyk made seven birdies through 10 holes at East Lake — including seven 3s to start the round — until he missed a few greens on the back nine that slowed his momentum. He wound up with a 6-under 64, giving him a one-shot lead over Justin Rose going into the weekend at the Tour Championship.
As for anyone questioning whether Furyk should have been a pick for the Ryder Cup?
He was more bothered by missing a 5-foot par putt on the 18th hole than what anyone thinks about his game or being in the Ryder Cup for the eighth straight time. With 16 wins, including a U.S. Open, and having qualified for every U.S. team since 1997, Furyk stopped believing he had to prove himself a long time ago.
All he cares about is winning the Tour Championship, with an outside shot at the FedEx Cup title and its $10 million bonus. Furyk was at 7-under 133 on a course where he won just two years ago.
Rose, who shared the 18-hole lead with Tiger Woods, made four birdies on the back nine and holed a 6-foot birdie putt on the 18th for a 68.
Woods went the other direction.
He was right in the mix when he made the turn, despite a double bogey on the eighth hole, But a series of bad swings that put him in bad positions led to four bogeys on the back nine, and Woods had a 73. It was his worst score at East Lake in 14 years, dating to a 76 in the second round in 1998. He was six strokes behind.
Bo Van Pelt made three bogeys on the last four holes and still had a 68 that put him two shots behind at 135, along with Masters champion Bubba Watson (66). Dustin Johnson, who had to summon his college teammate from Coastal Carolina to caddie for him when his regular had back problems, had a 67 and was another shot back, along with Georgia Tech alum Matt Kuchar (69).
Rory McIlroy, who is leading the FedEx Cup after winning the last two events, made an eagle on the 15th that turned around his fortunes. He had a 68 and was only four shots behind.
At Midland, Texas, Jason Allred's scorching start launched him up the leaderboard and into a tie for 21st in the second round of the WNB Golf Classic at Midland Country Club.
The Ashland native came into the day knotted for 37th, but turned in a 3-under-par 69 to easily surpass the cut line.
Allred's scorecard was unscathed until the final two holes when he sputtered for back-to-back bogeys. However, he recorded birdies on hole Nos. 1, 4, 9, 10 and 15.
Danny Lee carded a 9-under 63 to leap from 57th into a tie for second with Jamie Lovemark, who began the day in a tie for first place with Aaron Goldberg. Morgan Hoffmann holds a three-stroke lead after shooting a 64.
Navistar LPGA Classic
At Prattville, Ala., defending champion Lexi Thompson shot a 3-under 69 to take a one-stroke lead into weekend play in the Navistar LPGA Classic.
The 17-year-old Thompson had a 12-under 132 total on the links-style Senator course at the Robert Trent Jones Golf Trail's Capitol Hill complex. She matched the tournament record Thursday with a career-best 63.
Last year, Thompson became the youngest champion in LPGA Tour history at age 16, winning by five strokes. Fifteen-year-old amateur Lydia Ko broke the record last month in the Canadian Women's Open.
Mindy Kim and Mi Jung Hur were a stroke back. They played in the same group and each shot 65.
Kim and Hur also missed late chances to tie Thompson. Hur missed a 3-foot birdie putt on the par-5 eighth, their 17th hole of the day, and Kim missed a 6-footer on the par-4 ninth.
Dori Carter was two strokes back at 10 under along with Hee Young Park and Lizette Salas. Carter had a 67, and Park and Salas shot 69. Top-ranked Yani Tseng was 3 under after a 70. Michelle Wie missed the cut by a stroke, shooting a 73 to finish at even par.