Wilkinson Leads Suspended Wichita Open

By Sports NetworkJuly 27, 2006, 4:00 pm
2006 Preferred Wichita Open WICHITA, Kan. -- Tim Wilkinson beat the rain and fired a 7-under-par 64 Thursday, giving him the first round lead at the suspended Wichita Open.
 
Wilkinson collected eight birdies with one bogey and holds a one-shot lead over six players in the clubhouse at minus-6. He was able to finish his round before a weather delay in the afternoon.
 
The beginning of the round was pushed back one hour, also due to inclement weather, and play was finally suspended for good due to darkness at 8:43 p.m. local time.
 
The first round will resume at 7:45 a.m. local time on Friday.
 
Wilkinson dropped his only shot of the day with a bogey at the par-4 15th, where he was admittedly a little too aggressive with his approach.
 
'I got a little greedy on No. 15,' he said. 'I tried to get it to the back of that green and it plugged in the back bunker.'
 
Otherwise, Wilkinson had a more than steady round, hitting 11-of-14 fairways and 13-of-18 greens in regulation and needing just 24 putts.
 
His group had an early tee time, so Wilkinson was able to finish his round before the afternoon weather delay. He still benefited from the ideal conditions created by intermittent rain.
 
'The greens are so soft out there it's like throwing darts,' he said.
 
Beginning on the back nine, Wilkinson made a surge up the leaderboard with four consecutive birdies starting at the 11th. Each of those birdie putts was inside 10 feet.
 
After his bogey at 15 and a par at 16, Wilkinson rattled off three straight birdies to reach six-under. He missed a 5-foot birdie putt at the second, but picked up his eighth birdie on a 15-foot putt at the par-3 fifth.
 
Wilkinson's 64 equaled his career-low score on the Nationwide Tour, set during the first round of the Miccosukee Championship in 2004. He attributed this 64 to the ease he feels playing on the par-71 layout at Crestview Country Club's North Course.
 
'I'm happy with the start,' Wilkinson said. 'This course suits my eye off the tee. I just feel comfortable here.'
 
The players knotted in second place at 6-under-par 65 are Kevin Johnson, Deane Pappas, Danny Briggs, Chez Reavie, Jason Dufner and Josh Broadaway.
 
There are six players on the course at minus-5 and three at minus-4.
 
Related Links:
  • Leaderboard - Wichita Open
  • Full Coverage - Wichita Open
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    Full-field scores from the UBS Hong Kong Open


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