How it happened: Gainey, Wagner lead Greenbrier

Tommy Gainey watches his tee shot on the 12th hole during the first round of the Greenbrier Classic golf tournament in White Sulphur Springs, W.Va., Thursday, July 4, 2013. Gainey finished the round at 8-under-par 62.

Tommy Gainey watches his tee shot on the 12th hole during the first round of the Greenbrier Classic golf tournament in White Sulphur Springs, W.Va., Thursday, July 4, 2013. Gainey finished the round at 8-under-par 62.

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Johnson Wagner flirted with 59 before finishing with an 8-under 62, Tommy Gainey equalled that number and both hold a two-shot lead over Jin Park and Webb Simpson after the first round of the Greenbrier Classic at The Old White TPC in White Sulphur Springs, W.Va.

Rounds in the 60s frequented the leaderboard Thursday after low numbers were a rarity two of the past three weeks, at Congressional and Merion.

But not everyone had an easy time navigating The Old White TPC. Phil Mickelson finished his first round since his runner-up showing at the U.S. Open with a 4-over 74.

See how the day unfolded Thursday at the Greenbrier:

• • •

Update No. 30: 6 p.m. EDT

A bogey at the par-4 18th gives Phil Mickelson a 4-over 74. His playing competitors, defending champion Ted Potter Jr. and Bubba Watson, shot 69 and 68, respectively.

• • •

Update No. 29: 5:47 p.m. EDT

After sending his tee shot right into the water, Phil Mickelson makes triple bogey at the par-5 17th and drops to 3 over through 17 holes.

• • •

Update No. 28: 5:28 p.m. EDT

Phil Mickelson pars No. 16, his fourth straight par, and he remains at even par through 16 holes. Mickelson has settled down after making four birdies and four bogeys in his first 12 holes.

• • •

Update No. 27: 5:25 p.m. EDT

There's no doubt the course is playing tougher this afternoon as the greens have gotten faster. As a result, just seven of the top 31 players on the leaderboard are playing this afternoon.

• • •

Update No. 26: 4:59 p.m. EDT

Neal Lancaster, 50, who's one once on the PGA Tour in 569 starts, is 5 under through 16 holes. Lancaster, who is now on the Champions Tour, is making his fifth PGA Tour start this season. He's missed two cuts in his first four PGA Tour events this year.

• • •

Update No. 25: 4:34 p.m. EDT

A birdie at the par-5 12th moves Bubba Watson to 1 under. He's now birdied eight of the last nine par-5s he's played dating to the first round of the Travelers Championship.

• • •

Update No. 24: 4:13 p.m. EDT

Phil Mickelson hasn't made the cut or broken par in two previous Greenbrier starts, and he's having a tough time so far today. Though he's at even par through 12 holes, Lefty has alternated bogeys and birdies since a bogey at No. 6.

• • •

Update No. 23: 3:50 p.m. EDT

Kenny Perry and Davis Love III are still pacing the afternoon wave at 5 under. They are a combined age of 101 years old, too.

• • •

Update No. 22: 3:37 p.m. EDT

David Love III, who withdrew from last week's AT&T National due to a hip injury, is 5 under through 11 holes.

• • •

Update No. 21: 3:06 p.m. EDT

Phil Mickelson makes the turn at 1 over. Mickelson birdied Nos. 7 and 9, but three bogeys have hurt his chances of starting strong.

• • •

Update No. 20: 2:58 p.m. EDT

Kenny Perry is 5 under through nine holes this afternoon. This is just his third PGA Tour start of the season. Perry missed the cut at Memorial and finished T-33 at the Byron Nelson.

• • •

Update No. 19: 2:36 p.m. EDT

Playing with Bubba Watson and Ted Potter Jr., Phil Mickelson has the worst score at the moment. He's 2 over through six holes while Potter is 3 under and Watson is still even par.

• • •

Update No. 18: 2:22 p.m. EDT

Bubba Watson has five pars in five holes to begin his first round. Watson is playing this event for the first time.

• • •

Update No. 17: 2:02 p.m. EDT

The afternoon groups are almost all out on the course, but just two players, Tag Ridings and Kenny Perry, are better than 2 under. Both are 3 under early in their rounds.

• • •

Update No. 16: 1:55 p.m. EDT

Phil Mickelson still has yet to make a birdie in his first round. He's 1 over through four holes.

• • •

Update No. 15: 1:35 p.m. EDT

After a bogey at the par-4 second hole, Phil Mickelson is 1 over early in his first round.

• • •

Update No. 14: 1:32 p.m. EDT

Jordan Spieth opens his tournament with a 3-under 67. Spieth now has four rounds in the 60s in his last five Tour rounds.

• • •

Update No. 13: 1:20 p.m. EDT

Webb Simpson is finished with a 6-under 64, his best round of the season.

• • •

Update No. 12: 1:01 p.m. EDT

Johnson Wagner's bid for 59 is officially over. Wagner was 8 under through 12 holes, but he made par on each of his last six holes to finish with an 8-under 62. Also shooting 62 today is Tommy Gainey.

• • •

Update No. 11: 12:45 p.m. EDT

Sean Payton, the head coach for the New Orleans Saints, is on the bag for Ryan Palmer this week. Click here for the full story.

• • •

Update No. 10: 12:25 p.m. EDT

Last week's winner, Bill Haas, just wrapped up a 2-under 68 to open the tournament. Haas made five birdies and three bogeys.

• • •

Update No. 9: 12:14 p.m. EDT

Johnson Wagner will need to birdie his last three holes to shoot 59 after a par at the par-3 15th. Also, Tommy Gainey has joined Wagner at 8 under. He's through 17 holes.

• • •

Update No. 8: 12:03 p.m. EDT

Another par for Johnson Wagner, at No. 14, and he's 8 under through 14 holes. Also, David Mathis, Peter Hanson and Brendon de Jonge are all finished with 4-under 66s.

• • •

Update No. 7: 11:53 a.m. EDT

Johnson Wagner makes par at No. 13 and he's still at 8 under. He needs three more birdies to shoot 59. Also, Tommy Gainey moves to 7 under after a birdie at the par-4 16th.

• • •

Update No. 6: 11:31 a.m. EDT

Fresh off his fifth top-10 of the season, Jordan Spieth is 4 under through 10 holes today and is T-4 at the moment.

• • •

Update No. 5: 11:29 a.m. EDT

With Johnson Wagner at 8 under through 12 holes, and The Old White TPC playing to a par of 70, we are officially in a 59 watch.

• • •

Update No. 4: 11:26 a.m. EDT

A birdie at No. 11 and an eagle at the par-5 12th have moved Johnson Wagner to 8 under. He's got a two-shot edge on Tommy Gainey and Webb Simpson, who are each 6 under.

• • •

Update No. 3: 10:48 a.m. EDT

David Mathis and Johnson Wagner are a shot back of leader Tommy Gainey, who is 6 under. Wagner, who is through 10 holes, has missed 11 cuts in 18 Tour events this season.

• • •

Update No. 2: 10:17 a.m. EDT

Last week's winner, Bill Haas, is 3 under through nine holes after starting on the back nine. Also at 3 under is Webb Simpson, who was T-5 in his last start, the Travelers Championship.

• • •

Update No. 1: 10:13 a.m. EDT

Tommy Gainey hasn't won since last year's McGladrey Classic and has missed 13 cuts in 22 Tour events this season. He's leading by two at the moment, though. He's 6 under through 11 holes and has four straight birdies, at Nos. 8-11.

• • •

Weather conditions

With rain forecast overnight, play is expected to open to wet conditions, light winds and about a 30 percent chance of continued showers, with temps in the mid 60s, according to weather.com; the chance of rain could rise again to 50 percent in the afternoon, with storms possible.

• • •

Preview coverage

Simpson, past champ Stallings among top predictions at Greenbrier

For the first time since the U.S. Open, Phil Mickelson will return to action at this week's Greenbrier Classic – yet he's not among our panel's picks to win this week.

Watson names North as Ryder Cup vice captain

Andy North is a two-time U.S. Open champion (1978, ’85), and played in the ’85 Ryder Cup at The Belfry in England. "When you win a couple of U.S. Opens, he knows what it takes to close the deal, and that's what we need on the Ryder Cup team," captain Tom Watson said.

For blue-collar players on Tour, missed cuts weigh heavily

Welcome to the side of the PGA Tour world that doesn't get televised – the painful one, the one devoid of big checks and red numbers. Not much fun is there? "No, not at all," said Brendan Steele. "Absolutely not."

Rude: PGA Tour, PGA offer sensible proposal as compromise

The two organizations pointed out that there is precedent to delay the ban on anchored putting several years for recreational players – in 2008, a similar course was taken regarding new groove configurations on golf clubs.

Tour players' lawyer: No plans to sue over anchoring – yet

Nine players, including Masters champion Adam Scott and Tour winners Carl Pettersson and Tim Clark, have retained Boston lawyer Harry L. Manion since January. The players are now “deciding what action, if any, to take next,” Manion said.

PGA Tour, PGA of America set to enact USGA anchoring ban

While the Tour’s nine-man policy board’s decision July 1 to follow Rule 14-1b was expected, there had been speculation the Tour might disallow anchored putting earlier, such as at the start of the 2015-16 season, in an effort to limit distraction.

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