June 13, 2015 / 2:08 AM / 4 years ago

Koepka hits the front at St. Jude Classic

Jun 12, 2015; Memphis, TN, USA; Brooks Koepka lines up a putt during the second round of the FedEx St. Jude Classic at TPC Southwind. Mandatory Credit: Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports

(Reuters) - Brooks Koepka fired a three-under-par 67 for a one-shot lead after the second round of the FedEx St. Jude Classic in Memphis on Friday. Big-hitting Koepka made four birdies and a single bogey to move to nine under for the tournament, with Austin Cook a shot behind after one of the day’s top rounds, a six-under 64.

“I still feel like I could be five- or six-under-par more. I really haven’t been firing on all cylinders but it’s good enough to be at the top,” Koepka told reporters.

Cook is playing on a sponsor’s exemption but is trying to prove that he belongs on Tour.

“I feel like I should be out here,” Cook said. My irons were on fire and I holed some putts.”

New Zealander Steven Alker is a shot further back, and a group of seven players are bunched at six under. Alker, who started on the 10th, had a hot stretch coming home on the front nine, reaching 10-under par before finishing bogey, double bogey to fall back.

Five-times major winner Phil Mickelson, who will head to Chambers Bay searching for a first U.S. Open win after posting a record six runner-up spots, managed a one-under-par 69 that leaves him at three under.

(The story corrects nationality of Alker to New Zealand)

Writing by Jahmal Corner in Los Angeles; Editing by Peter Rutherford

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