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Dec 9, 2012 8:52pm
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ENDICOTT, N. Morris Claiborne Womens Jersey .Y. —
Bernhard Langer topped the leaderboard at 7 under when first-round play in the
Dicks Sporting Goods Open was suspended because of rain Friday. Coming off a
victory two weeks ago in the 3M Championship in Blaine, Minn., Langer was facing
an 8-foot birdie putt on the 16th hole when play was stopped at En-Joie Golf
Course. “I played pretty solid. I drove the ball very well. I hit a lot of
fairways to give myself opportunities with my iron shots,” said Langer, who
closed with a 62 in his victory in Minnesota. “Im disappointed we had to stop
because I was going well, feeling good, but hopefully well continue tomorrow.”
After 1.7 inches of rain fell Tuesday night, the course couldnt hold much more
water Friday before it became unplayable. Gene Smith, assistant tournament
director for the Champions Tour, said it wouldve taken at least an hour for the
course to become playable again once the rain stopped. “We have several fairways
out there that are totally under water. If a player was trying to take relief
from casual water, he would probably have to go about 40 yards from where the
ball is on the fairway,” Smith said. “Were not going to play that way.”
Defending champion John Huston, Willie Wood and Chien Soon Lu were 5 under.
Willie Wood, one of only 12 players to complete the round, shot a 67. Huston had
three holes left, and Lu had nine to go. Langer said hes going to have to wake
up at about 4:30 a.m. to get to the range at ahead of the 7:30 a.m. start. While
he doesnt have many holes to go before he finishes his first round, hell have
plenty of waiting around to do before the start of his second round. “Therell be
a lot of hanging around, preparing, warming up twice,” Langer said. “Its just
going to make a long day, thats all.” Tournament director John Karedes said the
course drains well because the fairways are either sand- or gravel-based. New
drainage also was installed after En-Joie had major flooding because of Tropical
Storm Lee last September. But this weeks rain was too much for it to handle.
“Just when that amount of rainfall that happens so fast,” Karedes said, “no
amount of drainage is going to help on that.”