SPORTS

Arnold Palmer grandson Sam Saunders shoots 7-under 64 to take Barbasol Championship lead

  • Jason Gore tees off on the 18th hole during the first round of the Barbasol Championship golf tournament Thursday, July 16, 2015, in Opelika, Ala. (AP Photo/Butch Dill)

    Jason Gore tees off on the 18th hole during the first round of the Barbasol Championship golf tournament Thursday, July 16, 2015, in Opelika, Ala. (AP Photo/Butch Dill)  (The Associated Press)

  • Sam Saunders, of Fort Collins, Colo., watches his the shot on hole three at the PGA Barbasol Championship at the Robert Trent Jones Grand National in Opelika, Ala. on Thursday July 16, 2015. (Mickey Welsh/The Montgomery Advertiser via AP)  NO SALES; MANDATORY CREDIT

    Sam Saunders, of Fort Collins, Colo., watches his the shot on hole three at the PGA Barbasol Championship at the Robert Trent Jones Grand National in Opelika, Ala. on Thursday July 16, 2015. (Mickey Welsh/The Montgomery Advertiser via AP) NO SALES; MANDATORY CREDIT  (The Associated Press)

  • Jason Gore reacts to missing a birdie putt on the 17th hole during the first round of the Barbasol Championship golf tournament Thursday, July 16, 2015, in Opelika, Ala. (AP Photo/Butch Dill)

    Jason Gore reacts to missing a birdie putt on the 17th hole during the first round of the Barbasol Championship golf tournament Thursday, July 16, 2015, in Opelika, Ala. (AP Photo/Butch Dill)  (The Associated Press)

Sam Saunders, Arnold Palmer's grandson, shot a 7-under 64 in warm conditions Thursday to take the first-round lead in the inaugural Barbasol Championship.

Saunders saved par with a 15-foot putt on the par-3 eighth hole and closed with a birdie on the par-4 ninth to cap his bogey-free round on Grand National's Lake Course. The 27-year-old former Clemson player is winless in 45 career starts on the PGA Tour, with a career best tie for second this year in the Puerto Rico Open.

Jason Gore was a stroke back at 65. He birdied four of his last five holes.

Stanford junior Maverick McNealy, the Jack Nicklaus Award winner as the Division I player of the year, was tied for third at 66 along with Martin Flores, Will Wilcox, Carlos Ortiz and Carlos Sainz Jr.