Finau shoots 63 for Callaway Invitational lead
PEBBLE BEACH, California (AP) — PGA Tour rookie Tony Finau shot a 9-under 63 at Del Monte and had a two-stroke lead over Billy Andrade and Lee Janzen of the Champions Tour after Thursday’s opening round of the Callaway Pebble Beach Invitational.
Finau, one of the longest drivers in golf, had nine birdies, one bogey and eagled the 331-yard par-4 11th after hitting his tee shot six feet from the pin.
“I’ve been working on my whole game,” he said. “I’m controlling it better and I’ve 100 percent polished off my game.”
Andrade, a four-time PGA Tour winner who just completed his first Champions Tour season, had a 65, also at Del Monte. Janzen, a two-time U.S. Open winner, tallied his 65 at Spyglass Hill.
“It was a nice relaxing day,” Andrade said. “I didn’t have a bogey. It was a pretty easy day and I was happy with it. But a 65 at Del Monte is one thing, a 65 at Spyglass is remarkable. My hat’s off to Lee.”
Janzen, beginning on the back nine, had five birdies and eagled the seventh.
“Well, hitting off the different tees helped,” said Janzen, who turned 50 in August. “I was able to take out of play all the bunkers I usually have trouble with. I hit every green.”
The 72-hole tournament has different tee placements for the varying tours’ players. It includes 82 pros from the four major tours and mini tours as well.
PGA Tour players James Hahn, Matt Bettencourt and Kyle Reifers all had 67s. Champions Tour veteran Bobby Clampett, who won the event in 1979 as a 19-year-old amateur, was among three players trailing Finau by five strokes after a 68 at Pebble Beach.
Hall of Famer Annika Sorenstam had a 73 at Del Monte and shared low scoring honors among the nine LPGA entrants with Stephanie Meadow, who also played at Del Monte.