Golf: Thomas seizes Riviera lead as Woods surges

Justin Thomas eagled the first hole of the third round on Saturday to open a one- shot lead over Adam Scott at the rain- hit Genesis Open, where Tiger Woods was surging as darkness halted play .

Thomas and Australia’ s Scott shared the 36- hole lead on 11-under par after both completed six – under par 65s in the rain-delayed second round .

Thomas , who had 14 birdies in the 30 holes he played on Friday, kept the momentum going over six second – round holes on Saturday morning with a birdie at the fifth and a par at the par – three sixth — where he used a wedge on the green to chip over the distinctive bunker in the middle of the putting surface .

Hours later he rolled in a 13-foot eagle putt at Riviera Country Club’ s par – five first hole to move to 13 – under par , separating himself from Scott who birdied the same hole before both parred the second.

Americans Patrick Rodgers and J. B. Holmes were both 11-under par with 16 holes to play .

“ It just is such a long day, ” Thomas said . “ It’ s good to get off to a good start and go home and get some rest. ”

The third round was set to resume at 6 :45 am (1445 GMT ) , as organizers pushed to complete a tournament that lost seven hours to a rain delay on Thursday .

“ It’ s not going to be light yet , ” said Woods , noting that players warming up for a 7 am start on Saturday could barely see .

Thomas , facing the prospect of playing 33- plus holes on Sunday, noted that the forecast also called for more rain and brisk winds.

– ‘ A lot of golf ’ –
“ I’ m going to need to be patient because I’ m playing so many holes , ” he said , “stay in it emotionally and stay patient , see what we can do . ”

Scott , too, was bracing for a lot of golf on Sunday, but said that also offered an opportunity .

“ It’ s a big day, a lot of golf , ” Scott said .

“ It’ s a great day to get your rhythm early and make a move … hopefully by the middle of the final round you ’ ve taken a whole bunch of guys out of the equation. ”

Tournament host Woods , who made the cut with one stroke to spare , wasn ’ t ready to be counted out .

He was five – under through his first four holes to vault into a tie for 14th at six – under par .

“ Made a couple of putts, ” said Woods , whose struggles this week on the greens included four three- putts in the first round .

He rolled in a five – foot birdie putt at the 10 th, followed that up with a 10- footer for eagle at 11, a 21- foot birdie at 12 and a 10- footer at 13 .

“ I putted well , ” Woods said . “ Hit a lot of good shots . ”

But Woods was short of the green with his third shot from the rough at the par – five 17th when he departed the course , facing a tough up and down when play resumes .
“ I’ ve got some work to do , ” Woods said . I’ ve got to get up and down at 17. Number 18’ s not going to be playing short with these temperatures .

“ It’ s going to be a tough day for all of us and one that we’ re going to have to fight through . ”

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