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Jim Furyk leads by four at Firestone

Jim Furyk leads by four at Firestone
Jim Furyk tees off on the 12th hole during the second round of the Bridgestone Invitational golf tournament. (Tony Dejak / Associated Press)

Jim Furyk is two rounds away from erasing a couple of bad memories at Firestone.

Even with a bogey on his last hole for the second straight day, Furyk did plenty right Friday morning in the Bridgestone Invitational for another four-under-par 66 that gave him a four-shot lead after the second round at Akron, Ohio.

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Furyk ran off three birdies in a four-hole stretch late in his round to reach eight-under 132.

It's a familiar position for Furyk at Firestone, where he has done everything right except leave with the trophy. In a seven-hole playoff against Tiger Woods in 2001, Furyk missed three putts inside 12 feet for the win, and Woods finally closed him out with a birdie.

More painful was three years ago, when Furyk led wire to wire and was in the 18th fairway on Sunday when one bad swing led to a double bogey and he lost by one.

Furyk doesn't see this as a shot at redemption.

"I would say that I'm disappointed I've never won here," he said. "It's one of my favorite courses we play. But to have like a chip on my shoulder? No. It's another year and opportunity, and we're only halfway. I'm going to try to do the same things this weekend and not really look at the leaderboard that much and go try to shoot under par."

Shane Lowry of Ireland had a 66 and was at four-under 136. Of the early starters on a day filled with sun, Furyk was five shots clear of Graeme McDowell (71), Danny Lee (72) and Henrik Stenson (69).

In his sixth round at Firestone, Jordan Spieth finally broke par with a 68 that left him six shots behind. Spieth would have to win this World Golf Championship to replace Rory McIlroy at No. 1 in the world.

"It goes with the bigger goal of trying to give myself a chance to win this championship," Spieth said. "It wasn't going to happen shooting even."

Champions

Colin Montgomerie birdied three of the final four holes for an eight-under 62 and the first-round lead in the Champions Tour's Shaw Charity Classic at Calgary, Canada.

Montgomerie had nine birdies and a bogey at Canyon Meadows. The Scot successfully defended his title in the Senior PGA Championship in May for his third major victory on the 50-and-over tour.

Australia's Peter Senior was a stroke back. Corey Pavin was tied for third at 65 with Tommy Armour III, Michael Allen, Skip Kendall and Canada's Stephen Ames.

Defending champion Fred Couples opened with a 67. Last year, he chipped in for eagle for a course-record 61, then beat Billy Andrade with a tap-in birdie on the first hole of a playoff.

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