Summerhays grabs lead at suspended Sanderson Farms Championship

Madison, MS (Sports Network) - Daniel Summerhays fired a 9-under-par 63 on Thursday and grabbed the lead at the Sanderson Farms Championship before the first round was suspended due to inclement weather.

Summerhays had seven birdies and an eagle at Annandale Golf Club to hit the clubhouse with the lead before heavy rain and lightning descended upon the course. The entire afternoon group was unable to finish and players will restart the first round Friday at 8 a.m. ET.

"You have to enjoy these moments," said Summerhays, who is coming off a tie for fourth at the John Deere Classic. "Sometimes we take good golf for granted and you forget how hard this game is. It can be a really hard game, so I'm just soaking it in. I'm really excited about where my game is at and I'm looking forward to getting back into the swing of things on the weekend and testing myself again."

Will Claxton, Michael Bradley and Jonathan Randolph are tied for second place after carding matching, opening-round 66s, while Bill Lunde, Dicky Pride, Skip Kendall, Peter Lonard, D.J. Trahan, Chad Campbell and Donald Constable share fifth at 5-under 67.

Rory Sabbatini and Jeff Overton are in the clubhouse at 4-under 68 and Kevin Kisner is minus-4 through six first-round holes.

Summerhays was in position to secure his first career PGA Tour victory last week after firing a third-round 62 to grab the 54-hole lead. But he tripped to a 72 in the final round and finished one stroke out of a three-way playoff, which Jordan Spieth won to earn a spot in the British Open.

The 29-year-old began on the 10th tee Thursday and again worked his way to the top of the leaderboard.

He didn't drop a shot during the first round, picking up a pair of birdies over his first eight holes before eagling the par-5 18th with a 17-footer from the fringe of the green.

"I definitely got things going with that eagle on 18," he said. "That was nice."

Around the turn, Summerhays birdied five of the next seven holes to reach 9- under, then parred Nos. 8 and 9 to hold on to the lead.

"You take all the positives," Summerhays said of last week's performance. "I shot 18-under par for 72 holes and was standing on the 18th fairway with a chance to win the golf tournament. That can only breed confidence. ... When you're driving the ball well and hitting your wedges well and feel like you can make almost any putt, it's a really fun game. I was really excited to come play this morning."

NOTES: This tournament is being played opposite the British Open Championship in Scotland ... Play was stopped at 3:01 p.m. ET. Tournament officials initially scheduled a restart at 6:20 p.m. ET, but they were forced to suspend play when conditions failed to improve ... In 2009, this tournament was canceled after heavy rain drenched the course for five consecutive days ... Ryan Blaum recorded a hole-in-one at the par-3 15th.

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