JERSEY CITY, N.J., Aug. 22 (UPI) -- Kevin Stadler, in his ninth year on the PGA Tour and still looking for his first win, found himself in front Thursday when play was halted at The Barclays.
The opening event in the tour's four-tournament playoff series got off to a sluggish start with two weather suspensions creating more than 5 hours of delay during the first round.
Those with morning tee times were able to complete 18 holes, but the afternoon half of the field was stranded on the course when darkness fell at the Liberty National Golf Club.
None of the late starters could complete nine holes.
Tiger Woods, a five-time winner on the tour this year and the runaway leader in the points race that determined the 125 playoff competitors, shot a 67.
The player who is No. 1 on the points list at the end of the four playoff tournaments will win the FedEx Cup and the accompanying prize of $10 million.
Kuchar came into The Barclays second in points. Brandt Snedeker, currently third on the points list, shot a 1-over 72 Thursday.
Because the points awarded escalate during the playoffs, a victory for Stadler this week could move him from 87th to second in the FedEx Cup race.
Among those who finished before dark Thursday, 20-year-old Jordan Spieth had a 70 and PGA Championship winner Jason Dufner had a 71.
Phil Mickelson, British Open champion and fourth on the points list, did not tee off until 7 p.m. and his opening shot of the tournament landed in a water hazard to the right of the first fairway. Mickelson, however, salvaged a bogey on the hole and recovered with two birdies to stand at 1-under through six when play was suspended.
The best round working among the late starters was a 4-under effort through six holes by Harris English.
The bottom 25 players on the points list will be trimmed from the playoffs after this tournament, leaving 100 to compete at the Deutsche Bank Championship next week. After a week off, the top 70 will take part in the BMW Championship and the field will then be cut to 30 for the season-closing Tour Championship.