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Noh leads Tour finals event

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COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) - Seung-Yul Noh shot a 6-under 65 in cool, breezy conditions Friday to take a two-stroke lead in the Nationwide Children's Hospital Championship.

Noh had a 9-under 133 total on Ohio State's Scarlet Course in the third of four events in the Tour Finals series. Two players were unable to finish the second round because of darkness after a long rain delay Thursday pushed back play.

``The course was very difficult today because of the wind,'' said Noh, who hit 16 of 18 greens in regulation in his bogey-free round. ``It was tough to control irons and the putting was also difficult. Today everything went perfect and I was making some putts.''

The bulk of the field is made up of players in the top 75 on the Tour money list and Nos. 126-200 in the PGA Tour's FedEx Cup standings. The top 25 on the regular-season money list are assured PGA Tour cards for the 2013-14 season, while the other players are fighting for 25 additional cards through earnings in the finals. The series money leader will be fully exempt and earn a spot in The Players Championship.

The 22-year-old Noh, from South Korea, was 160th in the FedEx Cup standings. He opened the series with a tie for seventh in Fort Wayne, Ind., and missed the cut last week in Davidson, N.C.

``I struggled the first three or four months this year after the equipment change,'' Noh said. ``I had used Titleist for eight years and switched to Nike. I really didn't feel comfortable until early May. I changed golf balls three times this year and I tried about 15 putters.''

Chesson Hadley was second after a 67. He's playing for a top priority ranking after finishing third on the regular-season money list to wrap up a PGA Tour card. The former Georgia Tech player won the Rex Hospital Open in June.

``It was nasty out there today, especially at the start,'' Hadley said. ``I was just extra patient all day today because I knew par was a good score with these conditions. I got a good draw with the tee times because I knew it was cold and windy this morning.''

Kelly Kraft was third at 5 under after a 69.

First-round leader Jim Herman followed his opening 64 with a 75 to drop into a tie for ninth at 3 under.

Andrew Svoboda, the Chiquita Classic winner last week, was tied for 17th at 1 under after a 73. Trevor Immelman, the winner of the series-opening Hotel Fitness Championship, missed the cut for the second consecutive week. He shot 77-70.

The Associated Press News Service

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The Associated Press
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