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Langer, Pernice share lead in Boca Raton
Boca Raton, FL (Sports Network) - Bernhard Langer and Tom Pernice, Jr. both carded 6-under 66s on Friday and they share the lead after the first round of the Allianz Championship.
Langer, the 2010 champion, has finished in the top three in three of the last four years at this tournament. On the other hand, Pernice is playing this event for the first time.
Bart Bryant and Rocco Mediate, who are both making their Champions Tour debuts, opened with 5-under 67s on The Old Course at Broken Sound Club. They were joined in third place by defending champion Corey Pavin, Fred Funk, Scott Simpson and Roger Chapman.
Tom Lehman, the 2011 winner, carded a 4-under 68 and is one of nine players tied for ninth.
Langer got up and down for birdie on the first, then parred his next five holes. At the short par-4 seventh, he chipped his second to 10 feet and converted that birdie effort.
Around the turn, Langer rolled in a 15-footer for birdie on the 12th. He poured in a 20-foot birdie try at 15 and made it two in a row with a 4-foot birdie putt on the par-3 16th.
Langer capped his round with a 2-putt birdie on the par-5 18th to grab a share of the lead.
"I started pretty good, missed some birdie opportunities early, but had some good par saves," Langer stated. "I got things going on 15. Probably could have been a couple shots better. I'm not feeling well today. I got sick early in the week and haven't felt good all week."
Pernice played the back nine first on Friday and rolled in an 18-footer for birdie at the 12th to get on the board. However, he gave that stroke back when he failed to par the 16th.
The 53-year-old atoned for that mistake with a 2-putt birdie on No. 18. His third to the par-5 first stopped within a foot and he kicked that in for his second straight birdie.
Pernice birdied the third from six feet out and sank a 12-footer for birdie at four to move to minus-4. He came right back with an eagle on the fifth as he holed a wedge shot from a 128 yards out. Pernice parred the final four holes to end there.
"I got off to a nice start, hit it close on 10, 11 and 12. I capitalized finally at No. 12," Pernice said. "Had a really nice stretch from 18 to No. 5. Good way to finish with par at nine, especially after a difficult lie near the lip of a bunker."
Lehman was joined at minus-4 by Dan Forsman, John Huston, David Eger, Dick Mast, Mark Mouland, Michael Allen, Jim Gallagher, Jr. and John Cook, who won the season-opening Mitsubishi Electric Championship.
NOTES: The first-round leader the last four years had shot 64 ... When Pavin won last year after having the first-round lead, he became the first player in event history to win after being the first-round leader ... Bart and Brad Bryant were paired together for the first time since the 2005 FUNAI Classic on the PGA Tour ... Dating to last year, David Frost extended his streak without a 3-putt to 272 holes.
02/08 19:16:57 ET
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