Mahan, Knox in front by one
Last updated: 8th February 2013
Russel Knox and Hunter Mahan both ended Thursday's first round of the AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am at six under par to share the lead.
Knox played his round on the par-70 Shore Course at Monterey Peninsula Country Club, while Mahan competed at the par-72 Pebble Beach Golf Links.
During the four-round event, the 156 competitors will pair up with amateur partners while playing at the above-mentioned two courses as well as the par-72 Spyglass Hill, before playing the final round at Pebble Beach.
South Korea's Seung-Yul Noh had reached seven-under after 16 holes, but bogeyed the last two to end on five-under. Joining him in a tie for third place is Matt Every, Greg Owen, Ryuji Imada, Scott Langley and Ted Potter, Jr.
Among nine players on four under par two strokes off the lead are Brandt Snedeker and Lee Westwood, who is making his first PGA Tour start of the year.
Defending champion Phil Mickelson, who won the Phoenix Open last week, also carded a pair of late bogeys to end on one-under and in a tie for 57th after the first round.
At the top of the leaderboard, Mahan made a fast start when he sunk a five-footer at the first hole before getting a tap-in on the second after a great chip on the par five.
Another lovely approach shot on the fourth handed him his third birdie, before converting back-to-back birdies on six and seven to finish the front nine on 31.
He made another birdie at the 11th, but after a run of five consecutive pars, he dropped his only shot of the day on the 17th when he was unable to get up and down from a green-side bunker.
Mahan, twice a winner on the PGA Tour, then got his seventh birdie of the day on the final hole to grab a piece of the lead.
"I enjoyed playing Pebble, I look forward to playing Monterey (on Friday)," Mahan said.
"Pebble isn't long so you can attack some holes out here and I was able to do that and I was able to get some short clubs and able to take advantage of the par-5s. I hit a lot of good quality shots and hit a lot of good quality putts that didn't go in."
Earlier in the day, Knox played the front nine first and converted birdie chances at both the 11th and 22th holes. After dropping a shot on the 14th, he got two more consecutive birdies at the 15th and 16th.
The Scot then bogeyed the first, but birdied the second and third to move back to four-under, before rolling in puts on the sixth and eighth to finish on six-under as well.
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