How it Happened: Barnes leads 1st round at Zurich

Ricky Barnes during the first round of the 2013 Zurich Classic of New Orleans.

Ricky Barnes during the first round of the 2013 Zurich Classic of New Orleans.

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RBC Heritage

Hilton Head, SC - Harbour Town Golf Links

5:48:02 AM ET. 04/19/2014




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There are plenty of storylines to go around this week at the Zurich Classic, from Jason Dufner's defense of his title to the 14-year-old Tianlang Guan looking to make another cut on the PGA Tour.

We'll keep you up to date all day long as the tourney gets underway with Round 1 in New Orleans – also, scroll down to check out our pre-tournament coverage:

• • •

Update 44: 8:26 p.m. EDT

Bobby Gates is the last golfer on the course in the top 15, at 5 under as he hits it in the fairway off the par-5 No. 18 tee. His third shot misses the green and he gets up and down for par.

• • •

Update 43: 8:06 p.m. EDT

Since missing a short birdie putt on No. 5, Brad Fritsch hasn't been the same. He bogeyed the next two holes before carding a par. Fritsch then ended his round by taking three shots to find the green at the par-3 No. 9 hole and two-putting for double bogey. Fritsch drops from 6 under through 13 holes to finish with a 2-under 70 at T-36.

• • •

Update 42: 7:58 p.m. EDT

Tianlang Guan two-putts for par on No. 18 to close his day out at even and stands T-85 as he heads to the clubhouse. He'll tee off early Friday. His playing partners, Justin Bolli and Henrik Norlander, finish 3 under and 1 under respectively.

• • •

Update 41: 7:43 p.m. EDT

Morgan Hoffmann finishes with birdies at Nos. 6-8, then a par at No. 9, to charge to 6 under and post a 66, good for T-4 alongside D.A. Points. Hoffmann's best finish this season is a T-14 at the Puerto Rico Open the week opposite the WGC-Cadillac Championship at Doral.

Tianlang Guan posts his second bogey-birdie sequence of the day before heading to his final hole of the opening round at even par.

• • •

Update 40: 7:01 p.m. EDT

Brad Fritsch sticks his approach to about five feet on the 438-yard, par-4 No. 5 hole. He two-putts to remain 6 under through 14 holes, two back of leader Ricky Barnes who posted a 64 this morning.

Stephen Ames finishes with 67, parring No. 18. His best finish this season is a T-20 at the Sony Open that started the year. Chris DiMarco three-putts for a bogey on No. 9 to end with a 68, good for T-16 with several golfers still on the course.

• • •

Update 39: 6:47 p.m. EDT

Brad Fritsch emerges from the group at 5 under with a birdie at No. 4, moving to T-4 at 6 under with five holes left in his round. Fritsch hasn't had a bogey today and eagled No. 11 to set the tone for his round, then has scattered four birdies.

Steady as she goes for Tianlang Guan, the 14-year-old who surprised at the Masters by earning low-amateur honors. At the par-3 No. 14, he cards his third straight par to remain at even for the day. Since hitting the 2-over mark with a bogey at No. 6, he's more than settled down – with two birdies and six pars.

• • •

Update 38: 6:38 p.m. EDT

It might not be the day's best score, but several big names have settled their day at 5 under.

Charlie Beljan was the trendsetter, so to speak, as the only golfer with a morning tee time to sign for a 67. In the afternoon groups, though, several ended their day on that mark: Ernie Els, Rickie Fowler, Luke Guthrie, Billy Horschel, Matt Jones and Chris Kirk. Still on the course at 5 under are Stephen Ames (through 17), Chris DiMarco (16), Brad Fritsch (12) and Bobby Gates (11). And six more golfers are still on the course at 4 under with a chance to post the day's seemingly lucky number.

• • •

Update 37: 6:24 p.m. EDT

Lucas Glover also closes with a birdie, catching Boo Weekley again and posting a 65 good for T-2. His best finish this season is a T-4 at the Honda Classic last month.

Tianlang Guan pars No. 12 to remain even for the day with two bogeys and two birdies.

• • •

Update 36: 6:12 p.m. EDT

Boo Weekley birdies again on his last hole of the day to get to 7 under, alone in second with a 65. Lucas Glover birdies No. 8 to get back to 6 under with one hole left to play.

Tianlang Guan finds his second birdie of the day at the par-5 11th, getting to even par for the day. Playing partners Justin Bolli and Henrik Norlander are 1 under and even, respectively.

• • •

Update 35: 5:47 p.m. EDT

Boo Weekley sinks a birdie putt at No. 16 to get to 6 under, two back of leader Ricky Barnes and tied with D.A. Points.

Add Rickie Fowler to those who are at 5 under with a bogey today, as he misses the green at the par-4 No. 15 and cannot get up and down for par. That means seven afternoon golfers are 5 under, in addition to Charlie Beljan this morning – and another 11 are on the course at 4 under, with five more in the clubhouse with 68s.

• • •

Update 34: 5:36 p.m. EDT

Lucas Glover cards his second bogey of the day at No. 6 to return to 5 under. Of the six afternoon golfers at 5 under, only he and Billy Horschel, who has completed 14 holes, have carded a bogey so far. Bogey free are Boo Weekley and Luke Guthrie through 15 and Justin Rose and Chris Kirk through 14.

Tianlang Guan just misses the green at the par-4 No. 10, then wedges to about 4 feet. Another par, anyone? He makes the putt to remain 1 over.

• • •

Update 33: 5:27 p.m. EDT

Chris Kirk is the latest afternoon golfer to get to 5 under, birdieing the par-4 13th during a bogey-free round. Kirk is T-5 with five others.

Another hole, another par for Tianlang Guan, who misses the green at the par-3 No. 9, then gets up and down. He makes the turn at 1 over, a little more than two and a half hours after his tee time.

• • •

Update 32: 5:08 p.m. EDT

Lucas Glover nails down his fourth straight birdie since making the turn to TPC Louisiana's front nine and is T-2 at 6 under, along with D.A. Points and Rickie Fowler. Fowler misses a birdie putt of just inside 10 feet to remain 6 under through 13.

Tianlang Guan pars the 372-yard, par-4 No. 8, missing a birdie putt of about 20 feet, to remain 1 over.

• • •

Update 31: 4:57 p.m. EDT

Rickie Fowler moves to T-2 and two shots back of leader Ricky Barnes with a birdie at No. 12, his second in a row. Fowler was 4 under on the front.

Luke Guthrie moves to 5 under, having birdied No. 4 for the second birdie of his back nine. Lucas Glover also has gotten to 5 under with three straight birdies on Nos. 1-3 after making the turn.

• • •

Update 30: 4:43 p.m. EDT

Ernie Els catches a tough break on the par-5 No. 11, his second shot landing on a greenside mound and bounding over the green – but a solid up-and-down gives him a birdie and carries him to 3 under for the day.

After an errant tee shot, Tianlang Guan recovers on the par-5 No. 7 hole and wedges to about 12 feet – then makes his birdie putt to return to 1 over. He's two hours into his round.

• • •

Update 29: 4:30 p.m. EDT

Let's take a look at the golfers in the Zurich Classic who are among the top 20 in the Official World Golf Ranking:

• Justin Rose (No. 4), 4 under through 10.

• Keegan Bradley (No. 13), 3 under through 10

• Bubba Watson (No. 16), 1-over 73.

• Jason Dufner (No. 20), 2-under 70.

• • •

Update 28: 4:21 p.m. EDT

Gary Woodland enters the fray at 4 under with a birdie at No. 9, wrapping up a bogey-free front nine.

Tianlang Guan finds tree trouble on No. 6 and reaches the par 4's green in 3, but far from the pin. He two-putts for bogey and slides to 2 over.

• • •

Update 27: 4:04 p.m. EDT

Stephen Ames birdies again, moving to 5 under after making his putt on the par-4 No. 8 hole. He's tied for third with Charlie Beljan. Chris DiMarco bogeys No. 17 to fall to 3 under through eight holes.

Tianlang Guan earns another on-in-two, two-putt par and is 1 over through five.

• • •

Update 26: 3:51 p.m. EDT

Stephen Ames, after opening with a bogey, cards his fifth birdie in six holes to join the group at 4 under. Billy Horschel, on the par-4 No. 8 hole and seeking his third straight birdie, fires his approach to about 3 feet; he makes the putt to expand the T-4 group at 4 under to nine golfers.

Tianlang Guan gives himself a birdie opportunity of about 15 feet and again two-putts for par to remain 1 over – the 14-year-old who incurred a penalty for slow play at the Masters has finished four holes just more than an hour into his round.

• • •

Update 25: 3:43 p.m. EDT

Boo Weekley snags his second birdie in 3 holes, making a putt at No. 8 to get him to 4 under with seven others including Rickie Fowler and Chris DiMarco from the afternoon groups. Seven afternoon golfers have joined Nick Watney at 3 under: Among them, Keegan Bradley, who birdied his first two holes of the day and has added another at No. 7, and Billy Horschel, who has back-to-back birdies at Nos. 1-2 and 6-7 with a bogey at No. 5.

• • •

Update 24: 3:32 p.m. EDT

Rickie Fowler becomes the second afternoon golfer to reach 4 under, birdieing the par-5 No. 7; he's yet to bogey today.

Tianlang Guan hits the middle of the par-3 No. 3 green and two-putts to remain 1 over for the day.

• • •

Update 23: 3:21 p.m. EDT

Tianlang Guan takes an erratic tee-to-green route playing the 548-yard, par-5 No. 2 hole, finding the right side of the fairway and then the left rough. But he wedges to about 20 feet, then two-putts for par to remain 1 over for the day.

Chris DiMarco fires his tee shot on No. 14 to within 5 feet and makes his birdie putt to go to 4 under through 5 holes; he's the first of the afternoon group to reach that mark and stands T-4 with five golfers from the morning tee times.

• • •

Update 22: 3:14 p.m. EDT

Chris DiMarco opens his day with a par, then birdies Nos. 11-13 to join the group at 3 under. DiMarco, 44, is playing his third event of the season. He finished T-22 at the Valero Texas Open and missed the cut at the AT&T Pebble Beach.

Brendan Steele bogeys No. 6 to drop to 2 under.

• • •

Update 21: 3:02 p.m. EDT

A few players are going low early during their afternoon rounds and are 3 under before making the turn:

• Jason Bohn birdied Nos. 2, 6 and 7.

• Rickie Fowler birdied Nos. 1, 3 and 4.

• Michael Letzig has four birdies and a bogey.

• Brendan Steele birdied Nos. 10, 13 and 14.

• Boo Weekley eagled No. 2 and birdied No. 6.

• • •

Update 20: 2:54 p.m. EDT

Tianlang Guan misses the fairway with his first drive, then takes two shots to find the green on the 399-yard par-4 No. 1 hole; he two-putts to open with a bogey. His group hits for the cycle, so to speak, as playing partners Justin Bolli and Henrik Norlander birdie and par respectively.

• • •

Update 19: 2:38 p.m. EDT

Kevin Stadler finishes the day with a birdie after wedging his approach shot inside 10 feet on the par-5 No. 18 hole and making the putt. He joins the group at 4 under with a 68. Playing partners Rod Pampling and Patrick Reed are 1 under and even par, respectively.

Tianlang Guan, the low amateur in the Masters two weeks ago, is just getting his round started. He's competing on a sponsor exemption.

Jin Park gets to 3 under for the second time today, quickly bouncing back from a bogey at No. 15 with a birdie at No. 16.

Brendan de Jonge, by the way, steadies himself on No. 18 and nearly holes out a birdie putt of about 20 feet; he cards a par to finish the day even.

• • •

Update 18: 2:27 p.m. EDT

Graham DeLaet finishes with a 4-under 68, closing with four birdies in eight holes including at the par-5 18th. Jason Kokrak also joins the T-4 group at 4 under, tapping in for par on No. 9 after back-to-back birdies.

Four golfers are another stroke back at 3 under: Nick Watney is in the clubhouse with a 69, while Kevin Stadler, D.H. Lee and Michael Letzig have finished 17, 15 and 5 holes respectively – Letzig birdieing three in a row early in his round, Nos. 12-14.

• • •

Update 17: 2:19 p.m. EDT

Defending champ Jason Dufner is in the clubhouse with a 2-under 70 that's good for T-12. He birdied No. 7 and followed with two pars to close out his round.

Dufner is among 52 exempt players headed to Merion for this year's U.S. Open, which reports a record 9,860 entrants going into 111 local qualifiers. Read the story and see the exempt list here.

• • •

Update 16: 2:12 p.m. EDT

Another struggle: Brendan de Jonge walked to the No. 17 tee T-4 at 4 under, on the strength of an eagle to start the day on the par-4 No. 1 hole and birdies at Nos. 2 and 11. But he gave it all back with a quadruple bogey 7 in which he didn't find the par-3's green until he was laying 5, and falling to T-55 at even par.

• • •

Update 15: 2:04 p.m. EDT

Not all the news can be good. Steve Marino has the day's high round so far, with an 80 that includes a triple bogey and two double bogeys; he missed the cut at last week's RBC Heritage. Jonathan Byrd has posted a 78 with a triple bogey and a double bogey, this on the heels of a T-66 last week.

• • •

Update 14: 1:52 p.m. EDT

A look at the golfers in this week's field who finished in the top 10 last week at Hilton Head Island, S.C.:

• Jerry Kelly (5), even par through 1

• Charley Hoffman (T-6), 1 under through 16

• Rory Sabbatini (T-9), 1-under 71

• Jordan Spieth (T-9), 4-over 76

• Billy Horschel (T-9), 1 under through 1

• Brendan deJonge (T-9), 4 under through 16

• Camilo Villegas (T-9), 1 over 73

• Chris Stroud (T-6), yet to tee off

• Trevor Immelman (T-9), teeing off momentarily

• Richard H. Lee (T-9), yet to tee off

• • •

Update 13: 1:33 p.m. EDT

D.A. Points birdies the finishing hole to move to 6 under with a 66, two back of leader Ricky Barnes, and heads to the clubhouse alone in second place. Points scattered seven birdies and bogeyed No. 12. Playing partners Justin Leonard and Gary Christian finish 1 over and 2 over, respectively.

Charlie Beljan birdies No. 18 to finish with a 5-under 67 that featured six scattered birdies and a bogey at No. 17. Playing partners John Merrick and Aaron Baddeley finish even and 1 over, respectively.

• • •

Update 12: 1:14 p.m. EDT

Harris English finds the water on the par-3 No. 9 hole to finish his day with a double bogey, falling into the group tied at 4 under. D.A. Points moves into second place at 5 under after a par on No. 17 and heads to the par-5 finishing hole looking to narrow leader Ricky Barnes' 3-shot margin.

• • •

Update 11: 1:02 p.m. EDT

Matt Every finishes his day with three straight pars, good for a 68 and four back of leader Ricky Barnes at T-4 with Charlie Beljan, Brendan de Jonge and Kevin Stadler. He's two back of Harris English and one back of D.A. Points.

Barnes' 64, meanwhile, ties him with six other players for the TPC Louisiana course record.

• • •

Update 10: 12:51 p.m. EDT

No better way for the leader to close out than a birdie, which is what Ricky Barnes does at No. 18 to close out his opening-round 64. The bird returns Barnes' lead to two strokes over Harris English, who pars No. 8 on the next-to-last hole of his day.

• • •

Update 9: 12:43 p.m. EDT

Harris English birdies the par-5 No. 7 hole to move to within a stroke of leader Ricky Barnes, moving to 6 under through 16 holes. Charlie Beljan and D.A. Points are another stroke back through 16 and 14 holes respectively.

• • •

Update 8: 12:22 p.m. EDT

Ricky Barnes is still on the move. A birdie at No. 16 extends his lead to two shots, taking him to 7 under. It's his fifth birdie in six holes.

Charlie Beljan, Harris English and D.A. Points remain in second at 5 under, Points with a bogey-birdie wobble at Nos. 12-13.

• • •

Update 7: 12:09 p.m. EDT

Charley Hoffman is steady today in following up his final-round 77 at the RBC Heritage last week. Hoffman is even through nine, with a birdie at No. 4 and a bogey at No. 5. Hoffman's T-6 finish last week came on the heels of a T-3 at the Valero Texas Open, so he's looking for a third-straight top 10.

• • •

Update 6: 11:59 a.m. EDT

Ricky Barnes rises again, with a birdie at No. 15 taking him to 6 under and giving him the lead outright. Playing partner Matt Every bogeys to fall to 4 under, where he's tied with Brandt Jobe, who birdied No. 17 and parred No. 18 to finish his front nine.

Charlie Beljan is holding steady a stroke back of the lead, following five straight pars with a birdie at No. 13 to move to 5 under. He's tied with Harris English and D.A. Points.

• • •

Update 5: 11:52 a.m. EDT

Ricky Barnes elevates himself into the lead with a birdie at the par-3 14th, his third birdie in four holes. He's in a group of four co-leaders at 5 under. Playing partner Matt Every has carded two straight pars, as has Harris English, while D.A. Points at No. 11 cards his second straight birdie to also get into the lead.

• • •

Update 4: 11:41 a.m. EDT

Defending champ Jason Dufner had been posturing himself well going to the No. 12 tee, but a three-putt for bogey on the par 3 drops him to 1 under. He's paired with Bubba Watson, whose bogey at No. 12 moves him to 1 over, and Nick Watney, whose par keeps him at 2 under.

• • •

Update 3: 11:29 a.m. EDT

Harris English joins Matt Every in the lead at 5 under, with a birdie at the par-5 No. 2 hole becoming his fifth in an eight-hole stretch during a bogey-free day. Ricky Barnes moves to 4 under with a birdie at the par-4 No. 13 hole, while D.A. Points also gets to 4 under with a birdie at the par-4 No. 10. But Fabian Gomez drops back to 3 under through 12 holes after a bogey at the par-3 No. 3 hole, leaving four golfers T-3 at 4 under.

• • •

Update 2: 11:21 a.m. EDT

Four Monday qualifiers are in the field. Lee Janzen is 1 over through 11 holes, with bogeys at Nos. 1 and 6 leading to a 2-over front nine. Mast Fast is 1 under through four holes, with a birdie at No. 2. Ken Looper, who played his college golf at New Orleans and LSU, is even through five holes, a birdie at No. 11 followed by a bogey at No. 12. Zack Fischer teels off in the afternoon.

• • •

Update 1: 11:12 a.m. EDT

Matt Every moves into the lead alone with a birdie at the par-4 No. 12 hole, hitting his approach shot to about 10 feet and sinking the putt.

Every's best finish this season is a T-9 in Phoenix in February.

• • •

Early risers

A few players are going low already at 4 under.

Charlie Beljan (through 9) birdied three of his first four holes.

Greg Chalmers (through 5) birdied his first four holes.

Harris English (through 10) birdied four of six holes before making the turn.

Matt Every (through 11) birdied the first two holes of each of his nines.

Fabian Gomez (through 11) just birdied No. 2 to get to 4 under through 11.

• • •

Slow starters

If your Thursday is off to a rough start, you're not alone. Also looking for their day to get better: Ben Kohles is 5 over through 10, while Jonathan Byrd, Steve Marino and Vaughn Taylor are 4 over through 7, 11 and 12 holes respectively.

• • •

Weather conditions

It's cool, cloudy and humid to start the day, with temps having reached 60. The high is expected to be in the mid 70s, with skies becoming partly cloudy and some of the humidity burning off as the sun breaks through. There will be some wind, but it doesn't seem likely to rival last week at Hilton Head.

• • •

Pre-tournament coverage

Zurich Classic: First- and second-round tee times

Check out tee times and pairings for the first and second rounds of the Zurich Classic of New Orleans at TPC Louisiana.

Rose, Dufner, Fowler among predictions at Zurich Classic

While plenty of Zurich Classic attention will be paid to Tianlang Guan, don't lose sight of the likes of Justin Rose, Jason Dufner and Rickie Fowler. Our weekly predictions.

Rude: Opinions from Tiger to Tianlang, Muirfield to metal cracks

Potential reasons Tiger Woods is skipping Quail Hollow, Tianlang Guan's long challenge, Peter Dawson's 'bullying' denial and more highlight this week's Hate To Be Rude.

Looper, Janzen among four qualifiers for Zurich

Ken Looper, who divided his college golf years between the University of New Orleans and LSU, and veteran Lee Janzen were among four golfers who got into the Zurich Classic via the Monday qualifer.

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