Helped by Trump's putting advice, Herman leads Barbasol

Jim Herman hits the ball from a bunker on the 18th hole during the second round of the Barbasol Championship golf tournament at Keene Trace Golf Club in Nicholasville, Ky., Friday, July 19, 2019. (Ryan C. Hermens/Lexington Herald-Leader via AP)

NICHOLASVILLE, Ky. — Helped by President Donald Trump's putting advice, Jim Herman had two eagles in a 10-under 62 to maintain a one-stroke lead Saturday in the PGA Tour's Barbasol Championship.

Trump's regular golf partner while working as an assistant professional at Trump National Bedminster in New Jersey, Herman changed to a conventional putting grip and clubhead at the president's suggestion following a recent round.

"He gave me a good talking to and told me to use a different style if it's not working," Herman said Friday after shooting his second straight 65 to top the leaderboard. "Some great advice, so I appreciate it."

On Saturday, Herman made an 11-foot eagle putt on the par-5 eighth and a 10-footer on the par-5 15th. He also had six birdies to get to 24-under 192 at rain-softened Keene Trace.

Encouraged by Trump to pursue a playing career, the 41-year-old Herman won the 2016 Shell Houston Open for his lone tour title — a victory that followed a friendly round with Trump.

Kelly Kraft was second after a 61. He also eagled the 15th, holing a 65-footer.

Austin Cook (63) and Bill Haas (65) were four strokes back at 20 under.

David Toms, two shots back after a second-round 64, had a 73 to drop into a tie for 32nd at 11 under. The 52-year-old Toms is making his third PGA Tour start of the season.

The winner will receive a spot in the PGA Championship, but not in the Masters.

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