Weekley, Glen Day tied for first-round lead in Madison

golf07 June 2024 23:21| © Reuters
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Boo Weekley © Gallo Images

Boo Weekley birdied the 18th hole at University Ridge Golf Course to tie Glen Day for the first-round lead at the American Family Insurance Championship on Friday in Madison, Wis.

Weekley and Day shot 4-under rounds of 68 on Friday to set the early pace, with a group of six players one shot behind. Defending champion Steve Stricker, David Duval, Jerry Kelly, Lee Janzen, Duffy Waldorf and Denmark's Thomas Bjorn are at 3-under 69.

Weekley, 50, was a popular character on the PGA Tour who won three times before joining the 50-and-older circuit last summer. He ran off three birdies in a row at Nos. 2-4 for an early jumpstart, then added one more birdie and a single bogey on the back nine before draining his birdie look at No 18.

Day, 58, hasn't won a professional tournament since 1999 but placed himself in contention Friday. He followed up his only bogey of the day with an eagle 2 at the 13th hole.

"I had a pretty good yardage, I had a sand wedge and it was like a 95-yard sand wedge," Day said. "I got lucky, obviously, when you make one like that. It hit maybe two inches short of the green and rolled in."

Stricker, the tournament host, and Kelly are both Madison natives who have won the event before. Kelly's wins came in 2019 and 2021.

Kelly recently revealed he is fighting rheumatoid arthritis that got bad enough to require a low-level chemo drug to "kind of put that down."

On Friday, Kelly was 1 over par for his first 10 holes, then ripped off five birdies in a row before closing with a bogey.

"That's why I had to not try to get fired up because I said I wanted to be stronger for myself, and I was so hard on myself those first bunch of holes," Kelly said. "I was just like, you know, I'm telling myself I may never play well. Your brain goes to dark places and I was dark again. It's like, c'mon. We had people out there cheering, having fun. I just got to get stronger mentally and the physical side hopefully will follow. Yeah, I've got to get better."