Jack Nicklaus, golf's all-time leading money-winner, and Ben Smith, who never played on the PGA Tour, shot seven-under-par 65s yesterday to share the first-round lead in the $1 million Senior Tournament Players Championship in Dearborn, Mich.
Lee Trevino and former major league pitcher Ralph Terry were one shot back. Gary Player was among six players at 67.
Forty-eight of the 78 players broke par.
Nicklaus birdied the final two holes to pull into a tie with early starter Smith, who never has won in seven years on the Senior Tour.
Nicklaus needed only 25 putts, 10 on the back nine, and made birdies of 24 feet at No. 17 and 15 feet at No. 18 to earn a share of the lead. He also hit the first 5-wood of his career, knocking it within 25 feet on No. 6, then two-putting for birdie.
PGA: In Oak Brook, Ill., Ray Stewart and Loren Roberts left the best field of the year in their wake with 65s at the Western Open.
Roberts, 34, holed a 162-yard shot from the fairway for an eagle-2 on his first hole, chipped in to save par on his eighth and was eight under par after 11 holes.
Stewart, 36, took advantage of his first-off-the-tee starting time for a stunning putting performance. He one-putted 12 times, including a 45-footer for par on the final hole.
Stewart has finished as high as second, but said his "greatest accomplishment to date is that I forced Payne Stewart to put a 'P' in front of his last name on the leader boards."
He is not related to the current PGA champion, who was tied with Roger Maltbie for third at 68.
Tom Watson was another stroke behind.
LPGA: Laurie Rinker, who last won on the LPGA Tour four years ago, shot a four-under-par 67 for a one-stroke lead after the first round of the $650,000 McDonald's Championship in Wilmington, Del.
Tied for second were Cathy Marino, Deb Richard, Jane Geddes and Barb Mucha.