Lietzke on Top Once Again


WEST DES MOINES, Iowa -- Bruce Lietzke posted a 6-under 65 Friday at Glen Oaks Country Club to take the first-round lead at the Allianz Championship.
Don Pooley shot a 66 to finish one shot further back along with David Eger in a tie for second.
'Today everything was with me,' said Lietzke. 'That doesn't mean you'll wake up tomorrow and everything will be with you. But today, I had all parts of my game.'
Lietzke, who is the only multiple winner on the Champions Tour this season, tallied three birdies over his first four holes to get off to a quick start. He found trouble with a bogey at the par-3 fifth but recovered well with back-to-back birdies starting at the par-4 eighth to make the turn at 4 under.
'I'm capable of shooting over-par here, but this is a course I'm real comfortable on,' said Lietzke. 'I've got a good feel for this course. I've got a little bit of history behind me.'
Lietzke made it three in a row with a birdie at the 10th and caught fire again down the stretch.
The reigning U.S. Senior Open champion ran off birdies at 15 and 16 to distance himself from the field, but a bogey at the 17th left Lietzke with a single-shot advantage.
'I convinced myself it was at least a right-lip putt,' Lietzke said of his play on 17. 'So I played a little less break and missed it on the low side. I kind of talked myself out of that putt.'
Pooley, who won the U.S. Senior Open in 2002, picked up three birdies and one bogey over his first nine holes.
The 51-year-old birdied the 10th and the 11th and added a birdie at the 15th to finish one shot back.
Defending champion Bob Gilder birdied three of his last four holes to finish at 4-under-par 67. Gilder was joined by Hale Irwin, Jim Thorpe, Allen Doyle, Jim Holtgrieve and Tom Kite in a tie for fourth.
Rex Caldwell, Howard Twitty, Mark McCumber, Craig Stadler, Morris Hatalsky, Bobby Wadkins, Tom Purtzer, Ben Crenshaw, Fuzzy Zoeller, George Burns and Jay Overton were one shot further back at 3-under-par 68.
Former major league baseball player Rich Rhoden and television announcer Mark Lye highlighted a group at 2-under-par 69.
Related Links
  • Full-field scores from the Allianz Championship
  • Full Coverage - Allianz Championship