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Reed’s 63 sets early pace at Humana Challenge

First Round – PGA Tour – Humana Challenge – Host Course, PGA West – La Quinta, California –

Patrick Reed engineered a bogey-free 9-under-63 to open the week and take the lead at the PGA Tour’s Humana Challenge.

Reed, 23, attacked the Palmer’s PGA West with precision. Ranked 69th in the world and coming off his first career PGA Tour win last season (Wyndham Championship), Reed entered the week as a big long shot at 100-to-1 odds to win the title, according to Ladbrokes.com.

Ryan Palmer, who was T-6 here last season, is just a shot back. He rallied to finish with six straight birdies on the Palmer layout Thursday to shoot 64. He is tied with three others including multiple-time PGA Tour champion Charley Hoffman.

Zach Johnson, the top-ranked player in the field at No. 6 in the Official World Golf Ranking, is T-6 at 7-under following his 65 at La Quinta Country Club. Former FedEx Cup champion Bill Haas also shot 65. He won this title just a few years ago.

High-profile players Keegan Bradley (T-19) and Webb Simpson (T-19) are six back. Brandt Snedeker struggled to card an even-par round at La Quinta. He is T-113.

With players moving around to all three courses over the first three rounds, look for a changing leader board all week in the Palm Springs desert.

Other Golf News:

  • Phil Mickelson, Rory McIlroy are all chasing underdogs at the European Tour’s Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship in Dubai after one round. All three are making their 2014 debuts. Rory jumped up to T-4 at 7-under overall and sits just two back through two rounds.
  • Reed made 16 of 26 cuts last season including five Top 10 finishes.
  • Henrik Stenson, who opened with 74 in Dubai, withdrew before the second round.
  • Bernhard Langer, who won the Champions Tour Money List a year ago making all 24 cuts, headlines the field at the tour’s 2014 debut Friday at the Mitsubishi Electric Championship in Hawaii.