Toms leaps ahead by 4 in Champions opener


KAILUA-KONA, Hawaii — David Toms shot his second straight 7-under 65 on Friday to take a four-stroke lead in the PGA Tour Champions’ season-opening Mitsubishi Electric Championship.

Toms, 52, had eight birdies and a bogey on another windy day at Hualalai.

“It was a tougher day today,” Toms said. “I think the only time I’ve seen (the wind) that direction was the day we got canceled a couple years ago, so I never really played the golf course with that wind direction. Made it a little tougher to pull clubs and everything, but to shoot 7 under today, I felt like I played really, really well.”

He won the U.S. Senior Open last year for his first Champions title after winning 13 times on the PGA Tour.

“I’m always hungry for it, but I just have to go out and shoot another low round,” Toms said. “Obviously, if conditions are better tomorrow, somebody’s going to shoot really low and it’s just a matter of going out there and doing it.”

Joe Durant, tied for the first-round lead with Toms, had a 69 to drop into a tie for second with Tom Lehman with a round left. Lehman shot 65.

Defending champion Jerry Kelly had a 64 to match 61-year-old Bernhard Langer (65) and Colin Montgomerie (66) at 9 under.

“Played solid and made some putts, which is nice,” said Langer, the tournament winner in 2009, 2014 and 2017. “Made a lot of medium putts. Can’t take those for granted. Kept the ball in play, no lava excursions.”

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