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Three tied atop blustery Byron Nelson

By STEPHEN HAWKINS
Associated Press

IRVING, Texas — Jesper Parnevik has been so inconsistent that he’s willing to take advice from a golfing buddy he refers to as a “complete hack monster.”

Something worked Thursday, with Parnevik overcoming gusty wind and a redesigned course to shoot a 2-under 68 in the first round of the EDS Byron Nelson Championship.

That left him only one shot behind Ryan Moore, Mathew Goggin and Eric Axley (pictured), whose 67s made them the highest-scoring first-round leaders at the Nelson since 1984.

So what was that tip Parnevik received during a phone call Wednesday night from his friend in Colorado?

“It was really a stupid thing,” Parnevik said. “It was the way he had his left big toe at impact. … It should be kind of pointed a little bit upwards.”

Parnevik was in a group of eight players at 68 that included 10th-ranked Adam Scott, the only player from the top 10 in the world ranking in the field. Kevin Sutherland, Briny Baird, Shaun Micheel, Ian Poulter and Dustin Johnson and Parker McLachlin also shot 68s.

Only 24 of the 156 players in the field broke par. Masters champion Trevor Immelman, playing for the first time since winning the green jacket, finished with a 78, better than only three other players.

Axley, who overcame an early bogey with four consecutive birdies from Nos. 4-7, was in the lead alone until he bogeyed the 429-yard 18th hole. He missed the final fairway and hit his approach into a greenside bunker — the only bunker he found all day.

Goggin, in the same group with Parnevik, got to 3 under with three consecutive birdies on their back nine. He sank putts of 15-20 feet on Nos. 5 and 6 before hitting his second shot at the 542-yard seventh hole to the fringe and chipping to 2 feet.

Moore had seven birdies and four bogeys in only his third tournament in 10 weeks. That included a six-hole stretch on the back nine when he had either a birdie or bogey on each.

“It was just one of those days that you knew it was going to be a battle the whole time you were out there,” said Moore, who has taken extra time off the last 2 1/2 months to cure a sore shoulder. “I’ll take a 67 on any course any day. This is definitely one of my better rounds of the year, for sure, in these conditions.”

The unusual high opening scores at the Nelson had more to do with the weather — windy conditions with gusts of more than 30 mph and wet fairways after about an inch of rain overnight — than the redesign of the TPC Four Seasons course since last year.

“It’s hard to make a real fair comparison right now, with the soft fairways and the wind blowing 20 mph,” said Harrison Frazar, a player from Dallas who was a consultant during the $10 million renovation. “I don’t think we need to jump to any conclusions too early.”

Frazar shot 73, one better than J.J. Henry, the Fort Worth, Texas, resident who was the other player consultant on the project.

Soon after last year’s tournament, when deteriorating greens were bumpy and sometimes brown, work began to make changes on every hole, with new tee boxes and more undulating greens, and to relocate 165 trees.

With the redone TPC, this is the first time since 1993 that the Nelson has been played on only one course. Cottonwood Valley across the street also was used during first- and second-round play from 1994 until last year.

Parnevik last won on the PGA Tour in 2001 and hasn’t finished better than 24th this season, missing four of 10 cuts. The Swede matched his best score in 25 rounds even after giving up a couple of strokes late, missing a 5-foot birdie putt at No. 7 before hitting into fairway and greenside bunkers on the following 461-yard hole.

Even though Parnevik won the Nelson in 2000, and has played there 10 other times, he was uncertain at times on the greens.

“It gives me an advantage of coming here for 10, 12 years, that you know every putt, you know every break,” Parnevik said. “And today, I didn’t have a clue. I actually missed a lot of putts out there.”

Immelman, the Nelson runner-up two years ago, was already 6 over through eight holes. He needed 34 putts and finished with a bogey at the 427-yard ninth, soon after his only birdies at Nos. 6 and 7. The South African admitted this week that the victory at Augusta “still hasn’t quite sunk in yet” after more than a week to celebrate and reflect.

“I just think I’ve just run out of gas,” Immelman said. “I’m obviously real tired. I’m been trying to get as much sleep as I can, as well as obviously running around.”

Notes: Defending champion Scott Verplank shot a 72. Verplank is playing in his 22nd Nelson, the most among active players. … Goggin hadn’t had an opening sub-70 round since a 65 at the Bob Hope Chrysler Classic in January, his first event of the year, when he was also the first-round leader before going on to tie for 35th. … Dean Wilson had a hole-in-one at the 174-yard fifth hole. He shot a 71. … The first-round leader the previous seven years had a 65 or better. Dave Barr had an opening 67 in 1984, matching Lanny Wadkins’ first-round score from the previous year.

Scores with relation to par from the first round of the EDS Byron Nelson Classic, played April 24 at the par-70, 7,166-yard TPC Four Seasons Resort in Irving, Texas:

1. Mathew Goggin 67

-3 1. Ryan Moore 67

-3 1. Eric Axley 67

-3 4. Kevin Sutherland 68

-2 4. Jesper Parnevik 68

-2 4. Briny Baird 68

-2 4. Adam Scott 68

-2 4. Shaun Micheel 68

-2 4. Ian Poulter 68

-2 4. Dustin Johnson 68

-2 4. Parker McLachlin 68

-2 12. Jeff Gove 69

-1 12. Tag Ridings 69

-1 12. Charley Hoffman 69

-1 12. Johnson Wagner 69

-1 12. Cliff Kresge 69

-1 12. Roland Thatcher 69

-1 12. Alejandro Canizares 69

-1 12. Sean O'Hair 69

-1 12. Tommy Armour III 69

-1 12. Michael Bradley 69

-1 12. Mark Hensby 69

-1 12. Nicholas Thompson 69

-1 12. Craig Kanada 69

-1 25. Shigeki Maruyama 70

E 25. Scott McCarron 70

E 25. Joe Durant 70

E 25. Troy Matteson 70

E 25. Dudley Hart 70

E 25. Michael Sim 70

E 25. Y.E. Yang 70

E 25. Richard S. Johnson 70

E 25. Steve Allan 70

E 25. Joe Ogilvie 70

E 25. Kent Jones 70

E 25. Ken Duke 70

E 25. Stuart Deane 70

E 38. Jeff Quinney 71
+ 1 38. Kevin Na 71
+ 1 38. Matt Kuchar 71
+ 1 38. Charlie Wi 71
+ 1 38. Hunter Mahan 71
+ 1 38. Ben Crane 71
+ 1 38. Tom Pernice, Jr. 71
+ 1 38. Scott Sterling 71
+ 1 38. Brad Elder 71
+ 1 38. Justin Leonard 71
+ 1 38. Sergio Garcia 71
+ 1 38. Chris DiMarco 71
+ 1 38. Dean Wilson 71
+ 1 38. Todd Hamilton 71
+ 1 38. Billy Mayfair 71
+ 1 38. Stephen Leaney 71
+ 1 38. Alex Cejka 71
+ 1 38. Paul Stankowski 71
+ 1 38. Nick Flanagan 71
+ 1 38. Todd Demsey 71
+ 1 58. Ryuji Imada 72
+ 2 58. Kenny Perry 72
+ 2 58. Mark Calcavecchia 72
+ 2 58. Brett Wetterich 72
+ 2 58. Luke Donald 72
+ 2 58. Brian Gay 72
+ 2 58. Scott Verplank 72
+ 2 58. Brett Quigley 72
+ 2 58. Nathan Green 72
+ 2 58. Brad Adamonis 72
+ 2 58. Tommy Gainey 72
+ 2 58. Craig Barlow 72
+ 2 58. Ted Purdy 72
+ 2 58. Jeff Overton 72
+ 2 58. Jay Williamson 72
+ 2 58. Corey Pavin 72
+ 2 58. Olin Browne 72
+ 2 58. J.J. Henry 72
+ 2 58. Bart Bryant 72
+ 2 58. George McNeill 72
+ 2 58. Brenden Pappas 72
+ 2 58. Tim Wilkinson 72
+ 2 58. Jose Coceres 72
+ 2 58. Richard Johnson 72
+ 2 82. Robert Garrigus 73
+ 3 82. Ryan Palmer 73
+ 3 82. John Senden 73
+ 3 82. Rory Sabbatini 73
+ 3 82. Jim McGovern 73
+ 3 82. Harrison Frazar 73
+ 3 82. Bo Van Pelt 73
+ 3 82. Omar Uresti 73
+ 3 82. Jon Mills 73
+ 3 82. Justin Bolli 73
+ 3 82. Frank Lickliter II 73
+ 3 82. Tim Petrovic 73
+ 3 82. John Mallinger 73
+ 3 82. Robert Gamez 73
+ 3 82. Anthony Kim 73
+ 3 82. Steve Marino 73
+ 3 82. Steve Elkington 73
+ 3 82. Chez Reavie 73
+ 3 82. Kyle Thompson 73
+ 3 82. Chad Collins 73
+ 3 82. Michael Letzig 73
+ 3 82. Bob Sowards 73
+ 3 104. Pat Perez 74
+ 4 104. John Merrick 74
+ 4 104. Tim Herron 74
+ 4 104. Daniel Chopra 74
+ 4 104. John Rollins 74
+ 4 104. Greg Kraft 74
+ 4 104. Ron Whittaker 74
+ 4 104. David Lutterus 74
+ 4 104. Martin Laird 74
+ 4 104. Matt Jones 74
+ 4 104. Kevin Streelman 74
+ 4 104. Colt Knost 74
+ 4 104. J.P. Hayes 74
+ 4 104. Shane Bertsch 74
+ 4 104. J.L. Lewis 74
+ 4 104. Carl Pettersson 74
+ 4 104. Patrick Sheehan 74
+ 4 104. John Riegger 74
+ 4 104. Cody Freeman 74
+ 4 104. Kenneth Ferrie 74
+ 4 124. Fredrik Jacobson 75
+ 5 124. Tom Scherrer 75
+ 5 124. Rich Beem 75
+ 5 124. Nick Watney 75
+ 5 124. Carlos Franco 75
+ 5 124. Brian Davis 75
+ 5 124. Kevin Stadler 75
+ 5 124. Paul Azinger 75
+ 5 124. John Daly 75
+ 5 124. Jerry Kelly 75
+ 5 124. Jimmy Walker 75
+ 5 124. Vince Jewell 75
+ 5 124. James Driscoll 75
+ 5 124. Travis Perkins 75
+ 5 138. Jason Bohn 76
+ 6 138. Jeff Maggert 76
+ 6 138. Paul Goydos 76
+ 6 138. Rod Pampling 76
+ 6 138. Mark Wilson 76
+ 6 138. Rocco Mediate 76
+ 6 138. Mathias Gronberg 76
+ 6 138. Paul Claxton 76
+ 6 138. Mitch Adcock 76
+ 6 138. Chris Stroud 76
+ 6 148. Chad Campbell 77
+ 7 148. Marc Turnesa 77
+ 7 148. Jin Park 77
+ 7 148. Bill Haas 77
+ 7 148. Robert McMillan 77
+ 7 153. Trevor Immelman 78
+ 8 154. Bob Estes 79
+ 9 154. Ryan Armour 79
+ 9 154. Jason Allred 79
+ 9

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