Allen masters windy conditions, leads Encompass Pro-Am by five
Tampa, FL, United States (AHN Sports) – Winds that blew steady at 20-25 miles per hour Saturday dismantled most of the contenders at the Encompass Pro-Am of Tampa Bay.
Michael Allen did more than survive, he thrived and shot a four-under par 67 that gave him a whopping five shot lead over his closest challengers.
“Conditions were definitely tough today,” said Allen, who finished at mid-afternoon and thought some of his pursuers would close the gap.
That didn’t happen. Corey Pavin was two shots behind Allen with four holes to play but bogeyed three of those four closing holes, shot an even par 71 and found himself tied for second at four-under par with Berhard Langer, Sandy Lyle and Olin Browne.
First round leader Bruce Fleisher was a victim of the gusty winds that rolled through the TPC Tampa Bay. Fleisher, who opened with a 65, shot 78. Chien Soon Lu went from 66 to 79. Only seven players in the field managed to break 70.
David Eger shot 66 and tied for the day’s best effort with Browne.
Kenny Perry shot 67 and it could have been a lot lower. Perry birdied eight holes, including five in a row starting at the ninth but double-bogeys at the 15th and 18th holes dismantled his round.
Allen, who has been one of the steadiest and most consistent players on the Champions Tour, is going after his second win. His only victory came at the 2009 Senior PGA.