Rd. 1 Notes: Mississippi Gulf Resort Classic

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March 23, 2012
Phil Stambaugh, PGA TOUR Staff

Weather: Temperatures in the low 80s with sunshine during the afternoon and light winds from the W at 5-10 mph. The start of the first round of the tournament was delayed 4 ½ hours to allow for course preparation after a total of almost eight inches of rain fell on the golf course starting on Wednesday afternoon. Both the Wednesday afternoon pro-am and Thursday pro-am were cancelled when the course became unplayable. After starting the tournament at 2:30 p.m. (CT), play was halted for the day by darkness at 7:08 p.m. with 69 players left to complete their first round. Lift, clean and place rules were in effect.

Tom Pernice Jr. (-7) thru 12 holes
Chien Soon Lu (-6) thru 16 holes
David Eger (-6) thru15 holes
Jim Carter (-5) F
Peter Senior (-5) F
Bobby Clampett (-5) thru 17 holes
John Huston (-5) thru 14 holes

• Partial Round 1 Leaderboard:

• In his first appearance on the 2012 Champions Tour, Tom Pernice Jr. played his first 12 holes in 7-under to take a one-shot lead midway through the first round. He came into this week with good vibes from his last trip to Mississippi. Last summer near Jackson at 51 years, 10 months, Pernice, Jr. shot four consecutive rounds in the 60s at Annandale Golf Club and nearly became the second oldest winner in PGA TOUR history, finishing T2 in the Viking Classic. Pernice's check for $316,800 at that event was instrumental in him becoming, at 52, the oldest player ever to earn exempt status from the top-125 on the prior-year money list.

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• First-round leaders/co-leaders have won only once in the first four Champions Tour events in 2012 (Corey Pavin--Allianz Championship). Neither of the first two winners of the Mississippi Gulf Resort Classic were first-round leaders. Dave Eger, the 2010 champion, trailed by one after the opening round at Fallen Oak. Last year, Tom Lehman trailed by one stroke after play ended on Friday.

• For the second consecutive week on the Champions Tour, preferred lies were needed for a round. Last week at the Toshiba Classic, the field played lift, clean and place rules in the second round due to heavy rain. Friday marked the first time since last year's Senior PGA Championship at Valhalla that the start of a Champions Tour event was delayed.

• There were three eagles made in the partial round but Jerry Pate had the only one at a par 4. After making double-bogey on the 1st hole to start the tournament, Jerry Pate rallied by holing a shot from the fairway at the 4th hole. It was the second eagle made on the hole in tournament history and the fourth overall eagle on a par-4 hole at Fallen Oak.

• After the first round is completed on Saturday morning, the players be repaired by score for second-round play. The first round resumes at 8:00 a.m. and the second round will begin at 11:30 a.m. Players will again go off both the 1st and 10th tees.

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