Naples, FL – Larry Mize fired a 10-under 62 on Friday to take round lead of the ACE Group Classic at the Talon Course at TwinEagles Golf Club.
Mize played his last two holes in three-under par and came up one shot short of the course record.
Defending champion Bernhard Langer headlines a group tied for sixth at six- under 66.
But Mize was the story on Friday.
The 1987 Masters champion parred his first two holes in round one, then rattled off back-to-back birdies at the third and fourth. Mize once again posted consecutive birdies, this time at the seventh and eighth, to reach four-under for the championship.
Mize rolled in a long birdie putt at the par-four 11th, then birdied the par- five 13th to tie for the lead at minus-six. It was his play down the stretch that gave Mize the first-round lead.
At the 14th, Mize sank an 11-foot birdie chance to move into sole possession of first. After some decent birdie looks at 15 and 16, Mize rolled in a 30- foot eagle putt at the 17th to get to nine-under.
Mize closed his round spectacularly with a short birdie putt at the last.
"I am playing well," Mize said in a televised interview. "I feel like things have been coming around. Things are clicking today. I played really solid so it's been fun."
NOTES: Mize hit every green in regulation on Friday...Tommy Armour III established the course record of 61 in 2010...Last week's Allianz Championship winner Corey Pavin shot a two-under 70 on Friday and is tied for 28th...Andy Bean and Jay Sigel withdrew on Friday.