Lye shoots 66 for Champions Tour top spot



CONOVER, N.C. (AP) -- Mark Lye birdied five of his first eight holes Friday and finished with a 6-under-par 66 for a one-stroke lead after the first round of the Greater Hickory Classic.
Lye's score matched his best in Champions Tour competition and left him one shot ahead of Bobby Wadkins, who shot a bogey-free 67 at Rock Barn Golf & amp; Spa.
Playing on a sponsor's exemption and in his second event since gall bladder surgery in late May, Lye birdied five holes on the front nine for a 31. He added another birdie at the par-5 14th.
Wadkins hit 13 of 14 fairways and made birdies at Nos. 6, 7, 10, 12 and 14.
Twenty-two players broke par, but none threatened the course record of 63, posted by Joe Inman last year.
Defending champion Craig Stadler shot an opening 71, while Jim Thorpe, who finished third last year, was part of a three-way tie for fourth at 69.
Argentina's Eduardo Romero shot 72 in his Champions Tour debut.
Copyright 2004 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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