Langer Pulls Ahead at Rock Barn

First-round co-leader Bernhard Langer followed up his opening 64 with a 4-under 66 to take a two-shot lead in the Greater Hickory Kia Classic at Rock Barn. The $1.6 million Champions Tour event teed off Friday at Rock Barn Golf & Spa in Conover, N.C.

The 56-year-old German, a member of golf's Hall of Fame, got off to a rocky start with bogeys on the first two holes. But the 18-time winner on the over-50 circuit soon righted the ship with three straight birdies on Nos. 4-6 then tacked on three more birdies on the back nine.

"I got off to a really rough start," Langer said. "But I settled down and got a nice run of birdies there, and played pretty decent golf for the most part."

Langer, who began the second round tied for the 18-hole lead with Dick Mast and Anders Forsbrand, heads into Sunday's final round at 10-under 130, two strokes ahead of Michael Allen (65), Brad Bryant (66) and John Riegger.

Bruce Vaughn shot Saturday's low round, an 8-under 62, to rise into a tie for fifth at 133 with Olin Browne (68). Forsbrand posted a 70 and now shares seventh at 134 with Jim Gallagher Jr. (66) and the winner in last week's SAS Championship, Russ Cochran, who carded his second consecutive 67.

The points' leader in the season-long Charles Schwab Cup, Kenny Perry, has carded rounds of 68 and 69 and is seven strokes behind Langer, who entered Rock Barn trailing Perry by 609 points in the Cup standings.

Mast fell down the leaderboard into a tie for 17th at 137 after a 73. Defending champion Fred Funk also shot 73 and shares 37th at 140 with several other playerss.

After flooding in July damaged the usual site of the tournament, the Jones Course, officials combined hole Nos. 10-18 from the neighboring Jackson Course for the front nine and Nos. 1-6 and 16-18 from Jones layout to create the home half for this year's event.

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