Stricker surges to PGA lead with brilliant start



JOHNS CREEK, Ga. (AP) — Steve Stricker has never won one of golf’s biggest championships, and the Americans are mired in their longest drought of the modern era.

Maybe the 44-year-old Stricker will take care of both in one week.

Stricker got off to a brilliant start at the PGA Championship on Thursday, starting out by playing the tough back nine at 4-under par, and making another birdie after the turn to stretch his lead to three strokes.

Jerry Kelly and Alexander Noren are at 3 under, while Adam Scott is in the group at 2 under.

Tiger Woods was actually tied for the lead after birdies on three of his first five holes. But a tee shot into the water at the 15th led to a double bogey, and he’s fallen apart since then: 5 over through 13 holes.