Merritt continues to lead PGA Tour Q-School


WEST PALM BEACH , Fla. – First-round leader Troy Merritt shot a 3-under 69 on Thursday to maintain his one-shot lead at the PGA Tour qualifying tournament.

After opening with a 67 on the Links Course at Bear Lakes Country Club, the American made three straight birdies on the Lakes Course and was at 8-under par with four rounds to go.

Jay Williamson was alone in second after a 69 on the Links Course.

Tour veteran Jeff Maggert, Andrew McLardy of South Africa, Ted Brown and Michael Connell all shot 67 and were in a group at 6 under.

The top 25 finishers and ties after the six-round tournament will earn cards for 2010, with roughly 50 more earning fully exempt status for the Nationwide Tour.

David Duval, Tim Herron and Jesper Parnevik were in a group at even par.