Woods in hunt as Stadler leads rainy Barclays
By Larry Fine ,ReutersJERSEY CITY, New Jersey -- Unheralded American Kevin Stadler shined in the gloom of a storm-hit day, shooting a seven-under 64 to emerge the surprise clubhouse leader after the opening round of the Barclays tournament on Thursday.
August 24, 2013, 12:00 am TWN
World number one Tiger Woods lurked three strokes back, with the opening event of the FedExCup playoffs stalled for more than six hours by heavy lightning and two rain delays.
Some 63 players, including British Open winner Phil Mickelson and Masters champion Adam Scott, were unable to complete their rounds and face an early start on Friday and another long day.
The 33-year-old Stadler, winless on the PGA Tour, made the most of his chances, however, registering seven birdies in a bogey-free round at Liberty National where bright sunshine eventually replaced the dark, stormy skies across the harbor from downtown Manhattan.
Tied for second on six-under were Sweden's Henrik Stenson, Colombia's Camilo Villegas and American Ryan Palmer, with Australian Jason Day and another American in Matt Kuchar a further shot adrift.
Woods, who began his long day at the 10th hole, reached four-under by adding a birdie at the par-three fourth after his run of three straight birdies was interrupted by the second weather delay.
The playoffs points leader, who has already won five tournaments this season, parred his last five holes for 67 and was satisfied after a grueling day.
“I'm actually tired,” Woods told reporters. “I got up at four this morning and I think it took us, from start to finish just under 11 hours for the day. Long day.
“I'm only three back. We have a long way to go.”
Stadler was thrilled with his showing given his lackluster season, the American posting just two top-10 finishes with a tie for third at Pebble Beach his best result.
“I've had kind of a pretty lousy summer, result-wise,” said Stadler, the son of 13-time PGA tour winner Craig Stadler.
“But I really started hitting the ball a lot better a couple of weeks ago.
“Felt like I was heading in the right direction even though the results were not showing it and finally got something out of it today.”