Holmes shares lead with LaBelle in FBR after second round


Sun, Feb 03, 2008 - Page 23

Former champion J.B. Holmes shot a 6-under 65 to share the lead with Doug LaBelle II at 9-under 133 among players who finished the second round at the FBR Open on Friday.

LaBelle shot a 64.

A 90-minute frost delay to start the day left 45 golfers on the course when play was halted because of darkness.

One of them, Camilo Villegas, was tied for the lead at 9 under through 12 holes. Two were at 8 under on the course -- Bill Haas through 13 holes and Ben Crane through 14.

They will complete the round on Saturday before the cut is made, then the third round will begin.

Pat Perez and Nick O'Hern shot 65s and were one behind the leaders at 8 under. Charles Howell III, Stuart Appleby, Briny Baird and Robert Allenby were 7 under.

Two-time champion Phil Mickelson had four birdies, but three-putted from 7 feet for a double bogey on the par-4, 464-yard ninth hole. He came back to sink a short birdie putt on the par-5 13th and chip in for birdie on the par-4 14th. Mickelson was 5 under, four shots off the lead, through 14 holes.

With the Super Bowl in nearby Glendale drawing even more interest to the crowded, rowdy party that is the FBR Open, a record second-round crowd of 120,891 attended on another clear, crisp day.

Temperatures rose from below freezing at sunrise to about 15oC at mid-afternoon.

The Thursday crowd was an opening-round record 83,657. The Saturday turnout could break the event's overall record of 168,337, set in the third round of the 2006 event in the wide open spaces of TPC Scottsdale.

Kevin Sutherland, who shared the first-round lead with Charles Warren, shot a 72 and was 5 under. Warren was 6 under through 12 holes.

Holmes' 2006 victory came in his fourth tournament on the tour. It remains his lone US PGA Tour triumph.

"It happened so quickly, and not saying I did it with ease, but I won by several shots," he said, "and I was saying `Well, maybe just keep it going' and I just kind of fell into a little bit of a slump."

His 6-under 65 marked the seventh time he has shot in the 60s in eight rounds at the FBR.