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Charles Coody and Dale Douglass, good friends as well as part

April 22, 1995

LA QUINTA, Calif. (AP) _ Charles Coody and Dale Douglass, good friends as well as partners in the Liberty Mutual Legends of Golf, are off to a good start in trying to successfully defend their championship.

Coody and Douglass, who won last year’s tournament by one shot over the teams of Bob Murphy and Jim Colbert and Chi Chi Rodriguez and Jim Dent, combined for a 9-under-par 63 Friday to take a 1-shot lead into today’s second round.

``We are good friends,″ Coody said. ``We do a lot of things together and our wives are great friends. Most of all, we know that if one of us hits a bad shot, the other’s not saying something negative.″

Tied for second at 64 were the teams of Rodriguez and Dent and Lee Trevino and Dave Hill. The tournament is being contested over the 6,843-yard par-72 Stadium Course at PGA West.

The teams of Murphy and Colbert, Gibby Gilbert and J.C. Snead, and Al Gieberger and Dave Stockton each had 65s.

The Legends format features 20 teams of players aged 50 to 59 playing for pieces of an $872,000 purse. Twelve teams of players aged 60 to 69 are in the Legendary field, which is competing for a purse of $143,000 in a two-day event, and the 70-and-over group features eight teams competing for $90,000.

Coody sank 5- and 12-foot birdie putts on the first and second holes and Douglass added 12- and 4-footers for birdie on Nos. 4 and 5 to get the team to 4-under after five holes.

Coody started the back nine with three straight birdies, including a two-putt from 60 feet on the par-5, 570-yard 11th.

``Charles started fast and kept it going,″ said Douglass, who contributed three birdies. ``He really played well.″

Coody called pars at the ninth and 14th holes keys to the round.

``We both missed the par-4 ninth hole on our second shots,″ he said. ``Dale was over the green and I was in the short rough near the front of the green. I hit a 3-wood like a putter 10 feet past the hole and then made the putt for par. Then at 14, Dale missed the green, but chipped to within five feet and made the putt to save par.″

Rodriguez had six of his team’s eight birdies.

``I’ve been playing so bad,″ Rodriguez said. ``But this morning at 8 a.m. I got a lesson from Sam Snead. Only took about five minutes for Sam to get my game back.″

Asked what Snead said, Rodriguez grinned and said, ``I don’t want to tell you. I don’t want it get back to Arnold (Palmer). No. I’m just kidding. Sam told me to relax. I was too tight. Release the club. Just let it go. I’ve told everybody that I’m not afraid of death, just 3-footers.″

Hill sparked his team with seven birdies

``Lee is still having trouble with his neck,″ Hill said. ``And I have had some back trouble. But today we had a lot of birdie chances and we made many of them.″

Gilbert and J.C. Snead made seven birdies in a bogey-free round.

``You really have to be alert of the wind,″ Gilbert said. ``It wasn’t strong today but it could change very quickly. Two or three times today, J.C and I would be hitting downwind and then when Bruce Devlin or Don Bies would hit, the wind had changed 180 degrees and blow right in their face.″