Power-hitters Ron Rhodes and Dicky Schmidt teamed like lemon and lime with four birdies and no bogeys for better ball 68 to take the lead in first-day qualifying for the 32nd Belle Haven four ball golf tournament yesterday.
Rhodes made all four of his team's birdies and shot 69 on his own ball. Rhodes' only bogey occurred on the second hold, where he drove into trees, but Schmidt saved the hole with par.
The golfers, who played against each other in the final of last summer's Kenwood Club Championship, teed off in the morning in the driving rain and were soaked after the front nine.Rhodes ruined two golf gloves in the process.
Former Belle Haven winner Henri deLozier and Columbia clubmate Tony Ciconte opened with three straight birdies and added three more birds. But they finished with one of their three bogeys, on the 18th hole, and are tied for second at 69 with John Vardaman and Brian Johnson of Congressional, and Gill FitzHugh of Army Navy and John Price of Evergreen.
Sixty-six teams played yesterday. Another 70 twosomes tee up today, including another former Belle Haven winner in Marty West of Columbia, with partner Bobby Morris of Manor. Last year's finalist, Dave Wysong of Belle Haven and two time U.S. Amateur champion Vinny Giles of Richmond, also play today. The low 63 teams of the 136 entered will join defending champs Matt Sughrue and Eddy Offterdinger of Bethesda in Saturday's opening round of match play.