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SPORTS WEEKEND | GOLF ROUNDUP

Five Share Senior Open Lead at One-Under 69

June 27, 1997|From Associated Press

There's no question as to the first-round leader of the U.S. Senior Open. Olympia Fields Country Club, just outside Chicago, is well ahead of the pack.

Gil Morgan, John Bland, Tom Wargo, Kermit Zarley and Steve Veriato were the only golfers to break par--and then only barely--with one-under 69s Thursday over the hard-breaking greens and tricky pin placements.

One stroke behind the fivesome were Dave Eichelberger, Leonard Thompson and club pro Buddy Whitten.

Eichelberger personified the day's best and worst. Shooting 31 on the front side and 39 on the back, he had seven birdies, seven bogeys and only four pars.

"I either hit a good shot or a poor shot," he said. "There wasn't much gray in my round."

*

Robert Damron shot a six-under 65 for a one-stroke lead as darkness fell on the first round of the St. Jude Classic at Memphis, Tenn.

Damron started with five pars, then turned in six birdies with no bogeys before a rain delay that kept 77 players from finishing.

Kenny Perry, Nick Price and Craig Kanada each shot 66.

Among those still on the course when play was suspended, Stewart Cink and Lennie Clements were at five under par with three and seven holes left, respectively.

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