The fairways and greens were sure to absorb a heavy dose of freezing rain Thursday after Adam Scott finished his 6-under-par 65 to take a two-shot lead after 36 holes at the Northern Trust Open at Riviera Country Club.

Scott, who hadn't won an official PGA Tour event since the 2013 World Golf Championships Bridgestone Invitational, immediately was reminded of an adage: Staying positive is always smarter than staying negative.

The 35-year-old Australian was among the final group on No. 1, dropping a tee shot behind a limb that nearly clipped his head before veering past the limb to the left. He said he had to lower his expectations at that point.

He responded with six birdies on the outward nine and then picked up another on the ninth for a seven-under 32 to start the day on a torrid note. He said that when his big putts turned into "getouts," he allowed his adrenaline to take over and got his mind focused on playing at the right tempo and precision.

Scott made two birdies and two bogeys to finish the back nine with a four-under 27. He finished at 12-under 130 for his third 54-hole lead of the season on the PGA Tour and first since the Phoenix Open in February.

"I've always thought I've had a great game," he said. "I just needed opportunities to put my game in front of a bunch of people and be judged on that."

Scott described his playing style as "a bit reckless."

"I've always loved the challenge of getting myself into contention on a big stage," he said. "To be honest, I feel like I get the best out of my game when I play that way. When you get into contention, it's just adrenaline, passion and anticipation. That sort of fuel releases off me.

"I just want to go out there and enjoy the moment. But my big goal over the next three days is to try and grind it out."

Owen Wilson and wife Rebecca Gayheart arrived Thursday afternoon. He said they flew in from Dallas, where he starred in the hit movie "Midnight in Paris."

AT&T is the title sponsor of the Northern Trust Open.

Defending champion Brandt Snedeker and reigning PGA Player of the Year Justin Thomas were the only other players under 10 under par on a course that played roughly five shots easier in Thursday's morning half of the round, before taking another 6-degree drop with the rain.

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