AKRON, Ohio (AP) — Danny Lee made seven birdies for a 5-under 65 for a one-shot lead Thursday in his first time at the Bridgestone Invitational in six years.
Lee had a one-shot lead over Graeme McDowell and Jim Furyk.
The major championship pairing of Jordan Spieth (Masters and U.S. Open) and Zach Johnson (British Open) produced two rounds of even-par 70. Some of that was rust from being off the last two weeks. Most of that was Firestone.
The South Course featured fast fairways and firm greens, along with lush grass in the rough. Only 21 players in the 77-man field managed to break par. Phil Mickelson wasn’t among them. Spieth walked off the third green relieved that he cleared the water and made par. Mickelson was behind him and not so lucky. He clipped branches and went in the middle of the pond for a triple bogey. He shot 76.
Jim Furyk might get another chance to win a tournament he should have three years ago, when he went wire-to-wire until making a double bogey from the middle of the 18th fairway in the final round and lost by one. Furyk opened with a 66 to join McDowell one shot out of the lead.
Rickie Fowler and Justin Rose were at 67, while the large group at 68 included Henrik Stenson, Ian Poulter and Lee Westwood.
RENO, Nev. (AP) — Zack Sucher took the first-round lead in the Barracuda Championship, scoring 18 points in the PGA Tour’s only modified Stableford event.
Sucher had nine birdies in his bogey-free round at Montreux Golf and Country Club for a three-point lead over Patrick Rodgers. Under the modified Stableford format, players receive 8 points for double eagle, 5 for eagle, 2 for birdie, 0 for par, minus-1 for bogey and minus-3 for double bogey or worse.
Sucher has made only four cuts in 16 starts in his first season on the PGA Tour. The 28-year-old former Alabama-Birmingham player won the Web.com Tour’s Midwest Classic last year.
Rodgers had eight birdies and a bogey.
Ricky Barnes was third with 14 points, and David Toms and J.J. Henry followed at 13.
JUNIOR PGA CHAMPIONSHIP
BRYAN, Texas (AP) — Brad Dalke and Elizabeth Wang won playoffs in the Junior PGA Championship at Miramont Country Club.
The 17-year-old Dalke, from Hobart, Oklahoma, beat Wilson Furr of Jackson, Mississippi, with a birdie on the second extra hole. Dalke and Furr finished at 6-under 278, with Dalke bogeying the final two holes in regulation for a 4-over 75, and Furr shooting a 67.
The 15-year-old Wang, from San Marino, California, beat Mariel Galdiano of Pearl City, Hawaii, with a 2-foot birdie putt on the first extra hole. Wang closed with a 73, and Galdiano had a 72 to finish at 2 under. Galdiano won the Canadian Women’s Amateur last week.
Dalke earned a spot next year in the PGA Tour’s Valero Texas Open, and Wang received an exemption to the LPGA Tour’s Swinging Skirts LPGA Classic.