NORTON — Admittedly, the only area of his game holding Kevin Stadler back has been putting. Ninth on the PGA Tour in greens in regulation? Very good. But 161st in strokes gained-putting? Not very good.
Friday was a pleasant surprise, then, with Stadler one-putting 11 times, and being credited with no putts on the third hole, when he knocked in a 12-footer from the fringe. He needed just 23 putts total, the key to his first-round 64 at the Deutsche Bank Championship, which left Stadler alone in third, one shot behind Phil Mickelson and Brian Davis.