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Tanaka, Quigley share GHO lead

CROMWELL, Conn., June 20 (UPI) -- Hidemichi Tanaka and Brett Quigley both fired a 6-under-par 64 Thursday and shared the lead after the opening round of the Greater Hartford Open.

In his first year on the PGA Tour after a successful run in his native Japan, Tanaka has missed the cut in seven of 16 events.

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But he found the TPC at River Highlands to his liking, recording seven birdies and a bogey en route to his best round of the year.

Quigley also has struggled this year, finishing no better than 49th in his last three tournaments and failing to make the cut in eight of 17 events.

Like Tanaka, Quigley started strongly with birdies on four of his first six holes. He finished with seven against a single bogey.

"It's been a hard year for me. I think I've tried too hard this year," Quigley admitted. "I've come out feeling like I should be able to take it to the next level, and hopefully, contend to win a golf tournament. As a result, I think I've tried too hard. And certainly, the last few months have been pretty frustrating."

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Tim Herron, Skip Kendall and Scott Verplank were among six players who shot 65s and were one stroke back. There were 12 players within two shots of the lead.

Defending champion Phil Mickelson, who finished second behind Tiger Woods at last week's U.S. Open, carded a 69. Sergio Garcia also shot 69, but Woods is taking the week off after his eighth major championship.

It looked like Quigley would be alone atop the leadeboard after grabbing the lead with a six-foot birdie putt at the par-5 13th hole to move to 6-under. But he dropped a stroke with a bogey from the greenside bunker on No. 16.

Quigley regained the stroke at the 17th hole, sinking a 17-foot birdie putt before scrambling to save par on No. 18.

"I certainly was not worried about the final score," Quigley said. "I was just playing and trying to have fun out there."

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