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Golf: Watney soars high with 18 pts in Reno

Published on Aug 1, 2014 4:38 PM
Nick Watney makes a tee shot on the 18th hole during the first round of the Barracuda Championship at the Montreux Golf and Country Club on July 31, 2014 in Reno, Nevada.  -- PHOTO: AFP

(REUTERS) - American golfer Nick Watney has never missed out on the FedExCup play-offs and he put himself in good position to maintain that record after charging into the first-round lead at the Barracuda Championship in Reno, Nevada on Thursday.

Watney, who is on the cusp of qualifying for the PGA Tour's lucrative season finale, piled up nine birdies to total 18 points at Montreux Golf & Country Club in the only event on the US circuit which uses the Modified Stableford scoring system.

"I do like the course," California native Watney, who totalled only 23 putts, told Golf Channel after carding a flawless nine-under-par 63. "I love this part of the country. And 23 putts, that's probably my best by five for the season. I'll take it."

Australian Geoff Ogilvy and New Zealand's Tim Wilkinson were joint second on 16 points with Scotland's Martin Laird and American Chad Campbell next best, on 13.

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