Orlando, FL (SportsNetwork.com) - Morgan Hoffmann pushed his lead to three strokes at the Arnold Palmer Invitational thanks to a 7-under 65 in Friday's second round.
He finished 36 holes at 13-under-par 131. Hoffmann is searching for his first tour win.
Hoffmann has played the first two rounds with a heavy heart as his grandmother passed away early Thursday morning.
Defending champion Matt Every, world No.3 Henrik Stenson and Harris English all fired 6-under 66s on Friday and they jumped into a share of second place at minus-10 at Bay Hill Golf Club and Lodge.
Ben Martin posted a 67 in round two and he moved into fifth place at 9-under- par 135.
World No. 1 Rory McIlroy ran off five consecutive birdies from the second and that helped him shoot 66. He soared into a share of sixth place at minus-8. McIlory was joined there by Danny Lee (64), David Lingmerth (67) and Matt Jones (65).
McIlroy played the back nine first on Friday and he birdied the 10th and 16th. He jumped to minus-9 with five birdies in a row from the second. However, he found sand with his approach at the eighth and that led to a bogey, which dropped him five off the lead.
"I probably wasn't quite as consistent from tee to green as I was yesterday, but the putter is the great equalizer. I made my fair share today, which was nice," McIlroy said. "Good day. My short game was good."
Hoffmann, who was in the first group out off the first tee, stumbled to a bogey at his opening hole as he found sand off the tee and again with his approach shot.
After a par at the second, Hoffmann rolled in a 7-footer for birdie at the third. He got up and down for birdie from a greenside bunker on No. 4. Hoffmann poured in a 23-footer at the fifth to move to minus-8.
Hoffmann made it four in a row as he birdied the par-5 sixth. He dropped in back-to-back birdies at eight and nine en route to making the turn at minus-11.
The 25-year-old nearly holed a bunker shot at the 12th, but settled for a tap- in birdie. He made it two in a row as he converted a 6-foot birdie chance at the 13th.
"The second shot into the bunker was exactly where I wanted actually. I tried to hit it in that bunker to get up and down because there was really no shot at the green from those trees," Hoffmann said. "That was fun hole ... and it was definitely a good save for birdie."
Hoffmann tripped to another bogey at the 15th to dip back to minus-12. He came right back with a kick-in birdie on the par-5 16th, which gave him four birdies on the four par-5s on Friday. Hoffmann closed with back-to-back pars.
Every, who hasn't finished inside the top-25 in nine tour starts this season, opened with three pars in a row from the 10th. He traded a bogey for a birdie from the 13th.
Last year's winner birdied the 16th and 17th, but missed a 7-foot par putt at the 18th. Every made the turn at minus-5, but caught fire in the middle of his second nine.
Every made a short birdie try at the par-5 fourth and birdied each of the next four holes to soar into a share of second place.
Stenson had two birdies and two bogeys in his first six holes. After closing the front nine with three straight pars, he birdied the 10th and 12th to move to minus-6. Stenson flew up the leaderboard as he closed his round with four consecutive birdies from the 15th.
English played the back nine first and he birdied three in a row from the 10th. He later birdie the 16th to get to 8-under. Birdies at the fourth and sixth gave English a share of second.
NOTES: Hoffmann's total of 131 is the best 36-hole total of his PGA Tour career ... The cut line fell at 2-under-par 142 with 70 players making the cut ... Among those that missed the cut were Retief Goosen, Paul Casey, Graeme McDowell and J.B. Holmes as well as former champions Rod Pampling, Chad Campbell and Tim Herron.