Funk leads Mize by 1 in North Carolina
Conover, NC (Sports Network) - Fred Funk fired his second straight 6-under 66 on Saturday to grab a 1-shot lead after two rounds of the Greater Hickory Classic at Rock Barn Golf & Spa.
Funk finished 36 holes at 12-under-par 132. He will go for his second win of the year, and eighth of his Champions Tour career on Sunday. In May, Funk beat Tom Lehman by one at the Insperity Championship.
Former Masters champion Larry Mize carded a 5-under 67. He is alone in second place at minus-11.
Mark Wiebe, the 2011 winner, shot 3-under 69 to move into a share of third place at 8-under-par 136. He was joined there by Chip Beck and Duffy Waldorf, who both carded 67s in round two.
First-round leader Dan Forsman managed an even-par 72 and fell into a tie for sixth at minus-7.
Forsman failed to get anything going in his round and was out of the lead by the time he bogeyed the fifth.
Funk rolled in a long birdie putt on the third to move to 7-under. He birdied the sixth to grab a share of the lead with Mize.
Mize traded a birdie for a bogey from the second. He converted back-to-back birdie efforts at six and seven to join Funk at minus-8.
Funk moved one clear with a birdie on the par-3 ninth. However, Mize caught fire around the turn. He joined Funk at 9-under with a birdie at the 12th.
Mize sank a 5-footer for birdie at 13 and made it three in a row with another birdie on No. 14. He was two clear of the field at minus-11.
Funk converted a 4-foot birdie try at 14 to get within one of Mize. After a pair of pars, Funk sank a 10-footer for birdie at 17. Funk also birdied the last from 20 feet out to finish one clear of Mize, who parred the final four holes.
"I was either making four or six at 18. That putt was motoring and thank goodness it hit the hole and fell in or it might have rolled off the green down into the bunker," Funk said.
Mize, who has three top-10 finishes this season, will go for his second Champions Tour win on Sunday. His lone victory came at the 2010 Montreal Championship.
NOTES: Funk has won three of the five times he has had at least a piece of the lead entering the final round of a 54-hole event on the Champions Tour...The 36-hole leader or co-leader has won this title in four of the last six years...Dating to this event last year, Funk has gone 66 straight holes without a bogey...John Huston withdrew during the second round with an elbow injury, while Forsman played through a sore back and Peter Senior battled a right arm injury.
10/13 18:23:03 ET