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Perry in Solo First at Senior PGA Championship


Kenny Perry broke his tie starting play on Saturday with fellow Kentuckian Russ Cochran after the 52-year-old from Elizabethton fired a 3-under 68 to reach 10-under 203 in the Senior PGA Championship at Bellerive Golf Club in St. Louis.

Perry carded five birdies, an eagle on the par-5 fourth hole, and three bogeys for a two-stroke lead over 18-hole co-leader, Jay Haas, who shot a 4-under 67. Three behind Perry is Cochran. The Paducah native shot even-par 71 after three birdies and a like number of bogeys.

Four back is Canada's Rod Spittle, who also shot 67, and five behind are Japan's Kohki Idoki (68) and Australia's Peter Senior (69). Sharing seventh at 209 are Steve Pate (68), Fred Funk (69) and Duffy Waldorf (71), who held the first-round lead with Haas.

Five players are tied for 10th, seven strokes behind Perry. The group includes Tommy Armour III (68), Kirk Triplett (69), Joel Edwards (69), Dan Forsman (70) and Japan's Kiyoshi Murota (73).

The low club pros through 54 holes are Sonny Skinner, the head pro at River Pointe Golf Club in Albany, Ga., and Mark Mielke, the head pro at Mill River Club in Oyster Bay, N.Y. Both shot even-par 71 and are part of a group of six players at 211.

Jeff Coston, a teaching pro at Semiahmoo Golf Resort in Blaine, Wash., had a 72 and is tied for 21st at 1-under 212 with seven others, including two-time Senior PGA champion Tom Watson, who also shot a 72, and defending champion Roger Chapman, who posted Saturday's low round, a 5-under 66.

After opening with a bogey, Chapman, a 54-year-old from England, reeled off four straight birdies and added another to make the turn in 4-under 32. On the back he mixed four birdies with three bogeys for a 1-under 35.

"I bogeyed the first and I thought, well, here we go," said Chapman, who also won the U.S. Senior Open last year. "Getting up at five o'clock for bogey at the first. But then I had four birdies in a row. So that sort of got the momentum going, which I severely lacked the first two rounds. Nine birdies today. And I made a couple of mistakes, but I'll take 66."

For complete scoring details, visit http://www.pga.com/seniorpga/scoring/leaderboard.