January 10 2013
Scott Langley, the first alum of The First Tee program to earn a PGA TOUR card, took the first-round lead at the Sony Open in Hawaii in his debut as a TOUR member.
Langley made six birdies and an eagle in his bogey-free opening-round 62 that left him one shot ahead of fellow rookie and Thursday playing competitor Russell Henley.
Scott Piercy and Tim Clark are another shot back at 6 under whole Jeff Overton and Stephen Ames round out the top 5 at 5 under.
It was the rookies stealing the show, however.
A total of 23 PGA TOUR rookies teed it up at the Sony Open and three are currently inside the top 10 -- Morgan Hoffmann is T7 at 4 under.
Langley, who won the 2010 NCAA title while at Illinois, has made the cut in four of the six events he's previously played on the PGA TOUR, including two top-30 finishes at the U.S. Open.
He opened the day with three birdies on his first four holes then added an eagle on No. 9 to make the turn in 5-under 30. Langley added birdies on Nos. 10 and 16 before breaking a tie with Henley on the 18th with a 6-foot birdie conversion to take the overnight lead.
Henley, who said he was just trying to keep pace with Langley, birdied eight holes but had a bogey on the par-3 11th in his first event as a TOUR member. Henley won two of his last four events on the Web.com Tour in 2012, including the Winn-Dixie Jacksonville Open at TPC Sawgrass, to secure his 2013 TOUR card.
Langley and Henley will tee off their second round with Luke Guthrie (+1) at 8:30 a.m. local/1:30 p.m. ET Friday.