Sutherland posts first Champions Tour 59

Kevin Sutherland became the first player to record a 59 on the Champions Tour, taking a one-stroke lead over Steve Lowery after two rounds of the Dick’s Sporting Goods Open at En-Joie Golf Club in Endicott, N.Y.

The 50-year-old Sutherland, from Sacramento and Fresno State, carded 13 birdies and had a chance to become the first player to shoot 58 in a PGA Tour-sanctioned event before he drove into the rough and eventually missed a six-foot par putt on the last hole.

“Who would have thought you’d bogey the last hole and still feel great?” said Sutherland, who was surprised to see other pros come out of the clubhouse to watch him finish.

“I wasn’t expecting that. It blew me away. It’s emotional, really, to see those guys, the support you get out here.”

Sutherland chipped in for an eagle on the fifth hole after making birdies on the first four, then added three more birdies in a row before making his first par of the day on the ninth hole.

He made five more birdies on the back nine, including three in a row through No. 17.

“This could be a good day,” said he Sutherland thought after his eagle, and he holed a shot from a bunker for birdie two holes later. “That was my biggest break of the day (at No. 7). I guess you need a margin of luck to shoot a 59.”

Nine players have shot 60 on the Champions Tour, most recently Michael Allen earlier this year in the Allianz Championship. Six players have posted 59s on the PGA Tour, the most recent Jim Furyk in the 2013 BMW Championship.

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