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GOLF : Purtzer, Sullivan Tied for Lead

April 23, 1993|From Associated Press

Tom Purtzer, who skipped the last three PGA tournaments because he was frustrated with his game, fought through cold and wind Thursday to grab a share of the first-round lead in the $1.5-million Greater Greensboro Open at Greensboro, N.C.

Purtzer's five-under-par 67 came during the morning at Forest Oaks Country Club, where temperatures were in the 40s with 20 m.p.h. winds.

Several players started fast in the afternoon as temperatures warmed into the upper 50s, but gusts reached more than 30 m.p.h., making the greens quick and putting difficult.

Mike Sullivan, who has won twice on the tour in 17 seasons, was the only golfer able to match Purtzer's score in the afternoon. He made a 15-foot birdie putt on his final hole to forge the tie.

"If it was Sunday, I'd be a lot more excited," he said. "At this point it's another nice birdie, but we have a long way to go."

The weather was the story at the third-oldest tour stop.

"When I looked out and saw some of the trees doubled over at the hotel this morning, I didn't know what to expect," said Sullivan, whose best finish this season was a tie for 23rd. "I was just looking to shoot around par."

Sullivan and Purtzer, who has missed the cut in four of eight events this year, hold a two-shot lead over a group of five.

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