Dream start drives Diaz to John Deere lead

Lightning Probability Today

Lightning Probability Today

Diaz, ranked 430th in the world, was among the last players on the course at TPC Deere Run but completed a bogey-free round to overtake Americans Adam Long and Russell Henley, who shared second on 64.

"I just feel that everything clicked today", Diaz said.

The former World Amateur Champion (2016) began his round with an eagle today when his second finished 10 feet from the hole at the par 5 2nd and finished with three consecutive birdies late in his round to be well placed ahead of a morning round on day two.

The 32-year-old Diaz had seven birdies to go with the eagle in a flawless, bogey-free round.

His best finish in a tour event was a share of eighth three weeks ago at the Travelers Championship.

Give Diaz some credit though, after struggling to stick on the PGA Tour for several years, he has been playing well lately. "Everything in my game feels really good right now". I've been hitting a lot of fairways, and today I hit good numbers all day, and that helps.

Scotland's Martin Laird is another shot further back in a tie for fourth.

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"I think the work that I've been putting in the last couple weeks, it's starting to pay off, and obviously it's crunch time. It's just a matter of a few bumps in the road here and there".

Long, this year's Desert Classic victor, made his lone bogey against eight birdies at 11, but the world No. 114 sank his longest birdie putt from 24 feet at the hard ninth.

Wolff, the youngest victor on the tour since Jordan Spieth won at Deere Run six years ago, hit 15 greens in regulation and played bogey-free. He was somewhat inconsistent on his front nine before rallying for three birdies in a five-hole stretch. Johnson finished 1-over-72 on Thursday.

Meanwhile, defending champion Michael Kim posted a first-round 73 to be in a tie for 134th. Johnson, who last shot over par there in 2008, missed a long birdie putt that would've kept the streak alive by inches.

CHAMPIONS: In Akron, Ohio, Steve Stricker topped the Bridgestone Senior Players Championship leader board at 5 under with a hole to play when the first round was suspended for the day because of lightning. He holed out from 254 yards after a 318-yard drive.

There is a surprising name atop the leaderboard after one round at the John Deere Classic.

Play was suspended at 12:55 p.m., and called for the day at 4:30 p.m.

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