Lowery Cejka Lead Lefty Four Back


2006 FBR OpenSCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- Steve Lowery fired a 6-under-par 65 Thursday to share the lead with Alex Cejka with round one of the FBR Open suspended due to darkness.
Bo Van Pelt, who played with Lowery, posted a 5-under-par 66. He shares third place with Jerry Smith, James Driscoll and Brent Geiberger.
Phil Mickelson
Defending champion Phil Mickelson is four back after a 2-under 69.
Three-time winner Mark Calcavecchia leads a group of players at minus-4. He was joined there by Paul Stankowski, Kirk Triplett, Lucas Glover, J.J. Henry and Thomas Levet as well as six other players.
The first round was suspended with four players left on the course. Those four players will return to the course at 10:00 a.m. ET to complete the round. The second round will begin as scheduled at 9:40.
Lowery opened with a birdie on the 10th, but three-putted for bogey at the next. From there, the two-time winner on the PGA Tour caught fire. Lowery sank a 12-foot birdie putt on the 14th at TPC of Scottsdale.
The 45-year-old got up and down for birdie on the par-5 15th. Lowery made another 12-footer for birdie, then capped his run of four straight birdies with an 8-footer on 17 to get to minus-4.
Lowery ran off three birdies in a four-hole stretch from the second to jump to 7 under. He dropped another stroke on the par-4 eighth
'I got off to a great start this morning. It was kind of chilly, too,' Lowery said. 'With three birdies in four holes on my back nine, I got a little bit of momentum going. I was in a good group too. Van Pelt was minus-5, so we just kind of fed off each other a little bit.'
Cejka birdied the third and came right back with a birdie on No. 4. He made it three straight as his birdie putt on the par-4 fifth dropped into the cup.
The 35-year-old moved to minus-4 when he birdied the eighth. Cejka cruised to six consecutive pars from the ninth. He birdied 15 and moved into a tie for the lead with a birdie at the 17th.
Smith started his round with five straight pars. He converted back-to-back birdies from the sixth before a bogey on eight. Around the turn, the 41-year-old birdied four straight holes to jump to minus-5. Smith bogeyed two in a row from the 14th, but closed with birdies on each of the last two holes to share third.
Van Pelt, like Smith, has never finished higher than third in a PGA Tour event. Van Pelt started on the back nine and collected birdies on 13 and 15 to get his round going.
The Oklahoma State alum also birdied the 18th to turn in 3 under. Van Pelt collected a birdie at the par-5 third and another on the fourth. He moved into a tie for the lead with a birdie at No. 8, but bogeyed the last to finish at minus-5.
'I made a good par save on 11, my second hole, and that got me off on the right foot,' said Van Pelt. 'Instead of getting over par early. I was able to stay even and made three birdies to close out the back nine. Lowery and I had a pretty solid day, hit a lot of fairways and greens and both made some putts. He bogeyed eight and I bogeyed nine, and those were the two only bogeys of the day, so we had pretty good momentum going early.'
Driscoll, who played on the 2001 U.S. Walker Cup team, got off to a fast start with birdies on each of the first three holes. However, he stumbled to consecutive bogeys from the sixth. He got one of those strokes back with a birdie on the eighth.
The 28-year-old got back to 3 under when his birdie effort on the 10th found the bottom of the cup. Driscoll carded birdies on 13, 15 and 17 to get it to 6 under. However, he bogeyed the last to end one back.
Geiberger got off to a quick start with birdies on the second and fourth. He cooled off though as he parred the next eight holes. The 37-year-old picked up birdies at 13, 15 and 17 to get within one of the lead.
Defending champion Phil Mickelson opened with a 2-under-par 69. He stands in at tie for 26th with 2002 winner Chris DiMarco, two-time runner-up Justin Leonard and 1999 champion Rocco Mediate among others.
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