HUMBLE, Texas (AP) — Ian Poulter put himself in position for a last-minute invitation to the Masters after a near miss last week, shooting a 7-under 65 on Saturday to surge into a share of the lead at the Houston Open.
Poulter followed an opening-round 73 that had him packing his bags in anticipation of a missed cut with rounds of 64 and 65 to reach 14-under 202 at the Golf Club of Houston. Beau Hossler birdied the par-4 18th to shoot 69 and match Poulter.
It was the first time since his last PGA Tour victory in 2012 that Poulter had consecutive rounds of 65 or better.
The 42-year-old English veteran made the quarterfinals at last week’s Dell Technologies Match Play to improve his world ranking to 51st — just missing the cutoff to move into the top 50 and earn an invitation to Augusta National, where he has never missed the cut in a dozen appearances. The only way he can get in the field now is to win in Houston.
Rickie Fowler birdied three of the first four holes to move into the lead before he faltered with a double bogey and a triple bogey. He shot 73 and was five shots back.