OPELIKA, Ala. (AP) – Martin Flores, Cameron Tringale and Zac Blair shared the Barbasol Championship lead at 6-under 65 on Thursday when first-round play was suspended because of darkness.
Flores and Tringale played in morning at Grand National’s Lake Course, and Blair finished his afternoon round after a rain delay of nearly two hours.
Robert Allenby, Chad Campbell, Rory Sabbatini and Tag Ridings shot 66, and Richy Werenski also was 5 under with two holes left. Steven Alker was 6 under after eight holes, then bogeyed two of the next five. He was 4 under with five holes to play.
Jim Furyk opened with a 69. The 47-year-old U.S. Ryder Cup captain is playing the event after failing to qualify for the British Open. Davis Love III, at 53 the oldest player in the field, had a 72 – a stroke better than son Dru Love in their third tournament together.
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Below are the official tournament notes from Round 1 courtesy of the Robert Trent Jones Golf Trail
2017 Barbasol Championship
(The 38th of 43 events in the PGA TOUR Season)
Opelika/Auburn, Ala. July 20-23, 2017 Purse: $3,500,000 ($630,000)
Robert Trent Jones Golf Trail at Grand National (Lake Course) Par/Yards: 35-36—71/7,302
FedExCup: 300 (winner)
PARTIAL First-Round Notes – Thursday, July 20, 2017
Weather: Mostly sunny early, with a thunderstorm in the afternoon. High of 93 with NNW wind 4-8 MPH.
Due to the threat of severe weather, round one was suspended from 3:52 p.m. until 5:40 p.m. CT. Due to darkness, round one was suspended for the day at 7:51 p.m. Players will be back in position at 7:40 a.m. Friday to complete their round. Round two will begin as scheduled at 7:20 a.m.
CURRENT First-Round Leaders
Zac Blair 65 (-6)
Martin Flores 65 (-6)
Cameron Tringale 65 (-6)
Zac Blair (110th FedExCup)
Zac Blair made four birdies and an eagle-three at No. 5 to open with a 6-under 65. Blair ended his round with a 17’ birdie at his final hole of the day, No. 9.
Blair has played in each of the two previous Barbasol Championships (T32/2015, T73/2016).
Blair is making his 29th start of the 2016-17 PGA TOUR Season, with a T8 at the Shell Houston Open his lone top-10 finish. He is coming off a missed cut at last week’s John Deere Classic.
Blair remains in search of his first career PGA TOUR victory in his 95th start. His best showing is a solo-third at the 2016 Sony Open in Hawaii.
Martin Flores (151st FedExCup)
Making his second start in the Barbasol Championship (T19/2015), Martin Flores reeled off six birdies and no bogeys to open with a 65.
Flores’ 65 in round one marks his lowest opening-round score in relation to par in 23 starts on the PGA TOUR this season.
Flores is in search of his second top-10 finish of the 2016-17 PGA TOUR Season (T10/Puerto Rico Open).
Flores is in search of his first career PGA TOUR win this week in his 165th start. His best finish is a T3 at the 2014 Wells Fargo Championship.
Flores, who originally joined the PGA TOUR in 2010, made his return to the TOUR this season after finishing eighth on the 2016 Web.com Tour priority list. On that Tour last year, he won the Lincoln Land Charity Championship
Cameron Tringale (132nd FedExCup)
With birdies on four of his last six holes, California native Cameron Tringale opened with a 6-under 65. His lone bogey of the day came at the par-4 11th.
Tringale’s accuracy in round one sustained him in round one. He hit 12 of 14 fairways in regulation and missed just three greens. Though he needed 29 putts to complete his round, he drained a 58’ 9” bomb for birdie at No. 9.
Tringale is making his second start in the Barbasol Championship this week (T20/2016).
Tringale is in search of his third top-10 finish of the 2016-17 PGA TOUR Season and first career PGA TOUR win in his 214th start. He has collected the runner-up finishes, most recently a T2 at the 2016 Shriners Hospitals for Children Open.
First-Round Lead Notes
In both of the first two years of the Barbasol Championship, the eventual champion – Scott Piercy in 2015 and Aaron Baddeley in 2016 – were five strokes back after the first round.
The first-round leader/co-leader has managed to convert for a win on the PGA TOUR this season on just six of 35 occasions this season. The last to do so was Jordan Spieth at the Travelers Championship.
Making just his third start of the 2016-17 PGA TOUR Season, Australia’s Robert Allenby opened with a 5-under 66. It marks his lowest score in relation to par on the PGA TOUR since a third-round, 6-under 66 at the 2014 Safeway Open. His T8 that week also marked his last top-10 finish on TOUR.
Allenby made just two cuts in 23 starts on the PGA TOUR last season.
Allenby is competing out of the Past Champion category on the PGA TOUR. A four-time winner on TOUR, he is in search of his first title since 2001.
A week after claiming T3 honors at the John Deere Classic, PGA TOUR rookie Rick Lamb opened with a 4-under 67. Following rounds of 69-70-63-66—268 at TPC Deere Run last week, Lamb is now 20-under in his last five rounds on TOUR.
Lamb made his way to the PGA TOUR this season by virtue of his 38th-place finish on last year’s Web.com Tour priority list. On that Tour last season, he won the LECOM Health Challenge.
Playing on a sponsor invitation and in his first-ever PGA TOUR event, University of Tennessee Chattanooga grad Derek Rende made five birdies and one bogey to open with a 4-under 67.
Rende, who is a member of PGA TOUR Latinoamerica, won the 2016 Lexus Panama Classic on that Tour last year.
Married to LPGA member Brooke Pancake, Rende spent the first six months of 2015 caddying for his wife.
Blayne Barber (119th FedExCup)
With this 1-under 70 in round one, Auburn University’s Blayne Barber is now a perfect nine-for-nine with scores of par-or-better at the Barbasol Championship. Eight of the nine have been sub-par scores.
In his two previous starts at the Barbasol Championship, Barber finished T10 in 2015 and T47 last year.
Barber is making his 21st start of the 2016-17 PGA TOUR Season this week, with a playoff loss at The RSM Classic his career-best finish.
In 2016, Barber advanced to the FedExCup Playoffs for the first time since joining the PGA TOUR in the 2014-15 season.
At No. 147 in the FedExCup standings, 17-time PGA TOUR winner and 2010 FedExCup champion Jim Furyk opened with a 2-under 69. Starting on No. 10, Furyk began birdie-birdie-bogey-birdie, before reeling off 14 straight pars to card the 2-under score.
Since its 2007 inception, Furyk has competed in 35 of the 40 FedexCup Playoffs events and has qualified for eight of the 10 TOUR Championships. This week marks just the third time he has missed competing in a major championship since 1996 (2004, 2016 Masters).