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Putter problems gone, Aoki ties course record

SHARE Putter problems gone, Aoki ties course record

Isao Aoki fixed his putting problems and tied the course record Friday with a 10-under-par 62 that gave him a two-stroke lead after the first round of the BellSouth Senior Classic.

Aoki had 10 birdies at the Springhouse Golf Club to match record set by Dave Stockton at the inaugural tournament here in 1994.Defending champion Gil Morgan finished with a 64, while John Jacobs, last week's winner, bogeyed No. 18 to finished with a 65. Hale Irwin and Tom Jenkins each shot a 66.

Aoki wasn't happy with himself and his putter following last weekend's Nationwide Championship where he tied for 17th and didn't break 70 in three straight rounds.

He came into Nashville early and spent Tuesday and Wednesday practicing his putting. Asked what his problem was, Aoki pointed at his head.

"Last two weeks I hit the ball good but didn't putt very well. Today I made some putts," he said.

Aoki also drove the ball well, starting quickly with five birdies over the first six holes. His 3-wood on the par-5 opening hole landed within five feet to set up his first birdie, and he left himself with putts of four feet and less on five other holes.

But he also made 20-footers on Nos. 4 and 13 and a 15-footer on No. 8. He used a pitching wedge to chip in from 18-feet on the par-4 18th.

"I'm happy with this round. didn't realize it tied the course record," Aoki said.

Morgan came closest to catching Aoki but fell just short despite eight birdies.

LPGA OLDSMOBILE: Donna Andrews survived a double-bogey, a double hit and a 2 1/2-hour rain delay to shoot a 4-under-par 68 Friday and remain in the lead after the second round of the LPGA Oldsmobile Classic in East Lansing, Mich.

Andrews, who is the tour's leading money-winner this season, is at 12-under 132 midway through the $650,000 tournament, leading Canadian Lisa Walters by two strokes with Meg Mallon another stroke back.

PGA BUICK CLASSIC: A drenching, wind-whipped rain washed out most of Friday's second round of the Buick Classic at Harrison, N.Y.

The round will be completed early Saturday, followed by the start of the third round.

Only 18 golfers finished Friday's round before the rain and casual water at the Westchester Country Club forced the suspension of play. Forty-eight players were on the course and 73 others, including first-round leader Kevin Sutherland and most of the rest of Thursday's top finishers, hadn't started their rounds.

EUROPEAN GRAND PRIX: Spain's Diego Borrego shot a 4-under-par 65 to take a one-stroke lead Friday after the first-round of the rain-delayed European Grand Prix in Slaley, England.

Only half of the 156-man field played the round with the other half scheduled to begin play early Saturday in the $1.06 million European Tour event.