Pals Padraig Harrington and Paul McGinley had contrasting finishes on opposite sides of the Atlantic.
Brave McGinley birdied three of the last six holes to survive the cut at Portuguese Open thanks to a one under par 70.
But Harrington bogeyed two of his last three on his way to a level par 72 in the second round of the Shell Houston Open.
Harrington's one under par total was still good enough to make the weekend and continue his preparation for Augusta next week.
And it was a similar story for world No 97 McGinley, who looked certain to crash out in Portugal before those late birdies.
England's Ross McGowan hit a super 68 to lead by two shots from Nick Dougherty on six under par with Peter Lawrie (70) the best of the Irish on one over.
Kilkenny's Gary Murphy (71) is a shot further back on two over but Damien McGrane and Rory McIlroy missed the cut.
McGrane missed out by a shot after a fine 70 while amateur McIlroy bounced back from an opening 79 with a one over par 72.