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Rodgers surges to lead at John Deere Classic

Rodgers won the 2014 Ben Hogan Award and held the No. 1 spot on the World Amateur Golf Ranking for 16 weeks in that same year.Patrick Rodgers carded an nearly flawless seven-under-par 64 to take a two-shot lead at the John Deere Classic after two rounds. This was the 25-year-old’s 62nd round of the season, eclipsing a previous best of 65 (x3), most recently in R2 of the Travelers three starts ago.Bryson DeChambeau is Rodgers’ nearest challenger heading into the third round at TPC Deere Run.Lee was listed as second alternate this week for the 146th edition of the tournament, to be played at Royal Birkdale in England from Thursday night (NZT). Howell followed his opening 63 with a 69. In his last three events, DeChambeau has finished T-26, T-17 and T-14. It’s his 78th career TOUR start (75 pro), and this is his first 36-hole lead/co-lead.Local favorite Zach Johnson, the 2012 victor, had a 67 to join Charles Howell III, the co-leader after the first round, at 10 under.Chesson Hadley (64), Chad Campbell (68), Kevin Tway (63) and J.J. Henry (64) are a stroke further back at nine under.Schniederjans, 24, was three under before making five birdies on his final eight holes.Rodgers drained five birdies in one seven-hole stretch before finishing with a bogey on his last hole of the day, the par-four ninth. That’s heady company although Rodgers has a long way to go to catch Tiger out on the PGA Tour. The pair shot a combined 61 on the back nine on Friday (front nine on the course) and stand clear of the rest of the field.