Harris English tied for early Friday lead at Travelers Championship

Harris English watches his shot on the 13th hole during the second round of the Travelers Championship golf tournament at TPC River Highlands, Friday, June 24, 2022, in Cromwell, Conn. (Seth Wenig/AP)

CROMWELL, Conn. (AP) — Defending champion Harris English shot a second-round 65 Friday to move into a tie for first place at 9-under 131 after the morning rounds at the Travelers Championship.

Patrick Cantlay, playing in the same group as English, led by two strokes heading into their final hole. But he found bunkers on his first two shots at the par-4 No. 9 and finished with a bogey, while English sank a birdie from roughly 20 feet to finish his 5-under round.

Cantlay, who shot a 60 at TPC River Highlands as an amateur in 2011, had a 67 Friday after an opening-round 64.

"(I'm) still right here in this tournament, and looking forward to the weekend," he said. "I enjoy the challenge, and that's all you can do in golf, is give yourself as many chances as you possibly can."

English, who won here last year after eight playoff holes, is playing in his third tournament since returning in May from Valentine's Day surgery to repair a torn labrum in his right hip.

"The toughest thing is walking and playing," he said. "I mean, I feel like back home I can go hit a bunch of balls on the range, but up and down these hills and being on your feet for five or six hours is the toughest part. It's getting better and better, and I feel like the more I play competitive rounds out here, it's just going to get stronger."

First-round co-leader J.T. Poston followed up his 62 with a 70 to fall a shot behind the leaders, with a group that included Seamus Power and K.H. Lee.

Poston will play on the weekend for the first time in his five Travelers appearances after missing the cut in 2017, 2018, 2019 and 2020. He also had missed the cut in six of his last 10 tournaments.

Rory McIlroy, who also shot 62 Thursday, was among those teeing off later Friday afternoon.

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