Arjun Atwal, trying to move up the money list enough to secure his US PGA Tour card for next season, seized the lead Friday at the McGladrey Classic.
The Indian, currently 175th on the money list, carded a seven-under par 63 in the second round for a 10-under total of 130 and a one-shot lead over tournament host Davis Love and Jim Furyk.
Love, trying to get past the disappointment of America's Ryder Cup defeat, carded a 66 and Furyk a 65 for 131.
The tournament is the penultimate PGA Tour event that counts toward the money list. The top 125 on the list earn full playing privileges for next season.
"Yeah, I'm in a desperate situation," Atwal said. "I've got no choice to either win or finish in the top two, I think my caddie figured out. So I've just got to grind it out."
Atwal had eight birdies and one bogey. He hit 14 greens in regulation and needed just 25 putts.
His birdie putts included efforts of 17, 13 and 20 feet.
"Oh, it feels great. I don't even know how many I made," said Atwal, who recently changed his grip -- moving his hands higher in order to get over the golf ball better at address.
Love, who captained the US Ryder Cup team that lost the Match Play showdown to Europe last month, used a belly putter to good effect.
"I've been messing around with this putter for well over a year, I just haven't had the nerve to put it in play," Love said. "But I had two pro-ams this week so I said, 'This is the best time -- my home greens, two pro-ams on my home course.' So I tried it out and the first day I used it, I made eight birdies. So it worked."
Love said on the eve of the tournament that he was still shadowed by the Ryder Cup loss -- to a European team that roared back for a final-day triumph.
Furyk, too, is bouncing back in his first tournament since the Ryder Cup.
He is also seeking a first Tour title since 2010, although he has had seven top-10 finishes this season.
"I have a lot of confidence in my ball striking right now, but you know, when you don't play a lot, sometimes it's the course management, making the good decisions," Furyk said. "And so far that's all kind of coming back to me slowly and I've kind of gained momentum as the last two rounds have gone on."
First-round co-leader Bud Cauley carded a 70 and was tied for fourth place on 132, along with David Toms (67) and Australian Gavin Coles (65).