Neal Lancaster leading, Kirk Hanefeld, Jerry Tucker tied in Senior Stroke Play Championship

By Craig Dolch
Published on

PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. (Jan. 10, 2017) -- When Neal Lancaster double-bogeyed the 18th hole of the 2002 Canadian Open to eventually lose in a playoff, his father had an interesting response.

“He said, ‘Son, if you had been a pilot, a lot of people would have died,’” Lancaster said. “It reminded me it’s just a game.”

Lancaster has another chance to win after shooting a 7-under 65 Tuesday on the Ryder Course to take a three-shot lead in the 50-59 division of the PGA Senior Stroke Play at PGA Golf Club.

Lancaster, who won the 1994 Byron Nelson Classic, is at 13-under 131. He’s three ahead of first-round leader Craig Thomas (70).

Robert Thompson had 10 birdies in a 64 that moved him to third place at 135.

“I tried to remember the last time I made 10 birdies in a round,” said Thompson, who won the 2010 Senior PGA Professional Championship, “but I can’t.”

In the 60-to-90 division of the PGA Winter Series Championship event, Kirk Hanefeld of South Hamilton, Mass., and Jerry Tucker of Stuart are tied for the lead at 10-under 134. Hanefeld was 10-under through 22 holes, but played the next 14 holes in even par, finishing with a 69 on the Wanamaker Course.

“The game was real easy for a while, then it got hard again,” Hanefeld said. “I can’t make the mistakes I made today if I expect to win.”

Tucker (66) won last week’s Quarter Century Championship, thanks to a back-handed chip to save par on the final hole. Mike San Filippo who lost a playoff in his division of the Quarter Century Championship, is tied for third with Lon Nielsen (64).

The PGA Winter Championships are presented by and PrimeSport.