THE WOODLANDS, Texas (AP) -- Craig Stadler's weight went down, and so did his golf scores.
Stadler, who lost 50 pounds on a steady diet, shot a 3-under-par 69 Friday to gain a share of the second-round lead at the Shell Houston Open with Loren Roberts and Robert Allenby.
''For a lack of any other word, I've worked my butt off for the past couple of months,'' Stadler said. ''I've dropped a couple of inches on my waist line. I've been staying steady and found a good little zone for the swing. I just haven't been able to score.''
He scored well enough on Friday, joining Roberts and Allenby with 9-under par 135 totals to lead the 77 players who made the 2-under par 142 cut.
Carlos Franco, the first day co-leader, shot a 1-under-par 71 in the second round for a 136 total, leading a group of six players sharing second place at 8 under.
The others are Fred Funk, Matt Gogel, Paul Stankowski, Mark Brooks and Scott Hoch.
Hank Kuehne, who shared the first-round lead with Franco, dropped back with a 2-over-par 74 for a 139 total.
Stadler had three birdies and three bogeys on the front nine.
''I tried for the first few holes to avoid disaster,'' Stadler said. ''I just kind of got myself through the front nine. Then I got more confident with the putting on the backside, and coming in was pretty good.''
Stadler got up and down on the first three holes of the back nine, then settled down. His birdie on the final hole got him a tie for the lead.
Allenby and Roberts each shot 5-under-par 67s. Roberts birdied four of his first six holes and overcame consecutive bogeys on Nos. 1 and 2.
After the bogeys, Roberts had three birdie putts, finishing on No. 9 by running in a 12-footer.
''I've been pretty lucky to shoot some low numbers,'' Roberts said. ''I think for me it's a matter of, when I putt well, that's it. When I get on a roll with the putter sometimes, it gets pretty hot.''
Hoch was happy to be near the top of the leader board, but he thought the rough was cut too short to be challenging.
''I probably would have missed the cut given the normal conditions here,'' Hoch said. ''But since they decided to put the ladies' rough out there ...
''Somebody's got the idea that we want to play with less rough and harder greens.
''Let's go ahead and let the long hitters win every week. They're what runs the tour. They're what makes the Neilsen ratings go up and everything else. Maybe that's what they're doing.''
Hoch didn't drive the ball well on Friday, but didn't feel he was penalized for it.
''I didn't drive it any good and I shoot 7 under. That's not supposed to happened,'' Hoch said.
Jack Nicklaus was on the course as a spectator, watching his son Gary shoot a 1-over par 73 for a 1-under-par 143 total, missing the cut by one shot.
Nicklaus declined to sign an autograph during the round saying, ''I'm a Dad today.'' Nicklaus later accommodated a large crowd of autograph seekers.
Hal Sutton, the only top 10 money-winner in the field, had a second-round 69 for a 140 total.
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