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Cameron Champ, Lanto Griffin share Shriners lead; Lexi Thompson misses cut

Cameron Champ and Lanto Griffin are tied atop the leaderboard after the second round of the Shriners Children’s Open on Friday in Las Vegas, while LPGA star Lexi Thompson shot a 2-under-par 69 but missed the cut.

Champ shot a 67 and Griffin turned in a 66 to move to 12-under 130 halfway through the event at TPC Summerlin. They are one stroke ahead of Sweden’s Henrik Norlander, who fired a second-round 64.

Champ followed an opening 63 with a colorful card on Friday. He began on the back nine and had five birdies and a bogey through his first seven holes before adding two of each on the front nine.

“I think just stick to my game plan,” Champ said of the weekend outlook. “If I hit it somewhere in the middle of what I did on Thursday and today, I think I’ll be fine. I’m putting it very well inside 12, 15 feet, driving it very well. For me, if I can take advantage of the par-5s again the next two days, that kind of sets me up.”

Griffin carded five straight birdie 3s from the 18th hole through the fourth. The longest of those was a 24-footer at the third.

Griffin is fighting to keep full tour status for 2024 after a rough 2022-23 season saw him battle through back and rib injuries. He entered the week No. 188 in the FedEx Cup Fall standings but would leap into the top 125 with a win.

“Unfortunately I’m on a medical (exemption) going into next year, so I think I’m about halfway through my medical starts. But it would be really nice to get that (tour card) locked up,” Griffin said.

Griffin’s only win on tour came in 2019, while Champ has three career victories but none since July 2021.

Norlander had four straight birdies during one stretch on the back nine, where he began, before punctuating his round with a 9 1/2-foot eagle putt at the par-5 ninth.

“I got pretty lucky on 9,” Norlander said. “I hit it just right rough and then tried to cut a 5-wood and tried to hit it just left of the green and got a really nice soft right bounce and just rolled that green to about 12 feet, 10 feet, made it. Played really solid.”

J.T. Poston (69 on Friday) Canada’s Nick Taylor (67) are tied for fourth at 10 under.

Thompson, the seventh woman in history to play a PGA Tour event and the first since 2018, had five birdies on Friday but bogeyed two of her final five holes to finish 36 holes at even par. She missed the cut by three shots.

“I knew once I had made a few birdies in a row that I would be somewhat close, but I knew the cut line would keep on going lower and lower with these guys, especially with not that much wind out there,” Thompson said. “I just really tried to stay focused on my game and focused on my swing thoughts, picking small targets and staying 100 percent committed, and whatever happens, happens.”

Thompson joined Michelle Wie West as the only women to shoot a sub-70 round in a PGA Tour event.

–Field Level Media

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