Sucher soars to PGA lead thanks to nine birdies

The Pak Banker - - INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS/SPORTS -

Amer­i­can Zack Sucher fired nine birdies and no bo­geys for 18 points to seize a three-point edge over coun­try­man Pa­trick Rodgers af­ter Thurs­day's first round of the PGA Bar­racuda Cham­pi­onship.

The 28-year-old tour rookie had four birdies on the front nine and birdied five of the first seven holes on the back nine to grab the lead in the unique tour­na­ment, which fea­tures a Mod­i­fied Sta­ble­ford scor­ing sys­tem as­sign­ing point val­ues to shots rather than reg­is­ter­ing a score rel­a­tive to par. Rodgers had eight birdies and a bo­gey to stand sec­ond on 15 with another US player, Ricky Barnes, on 14 points af­ter eight birdies and two bo­geys. Most of golf s top play­ers are at the World Golf Cham­pi­onships Bridge­stone In­vi­ta­tional this week at Fire­stone Coun­try Club in Akron, Ohio, as a fi­nal tuneup for next week s PGA Cham­pi­onship at Whistling Straits in Wis­con­sin.

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