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Eger, Stadler, Hatalksy share lead

8/20/2005 - Golf

SNOQUALMIE, Wash. -- Former PGA Tour and USGA administrator
David Eger shot an 8-under 64 on Saturday for a share of the
second-round lead with Craig Stadler and Morris Hatalsky in the
Boeing Greater Seattle Classic.

The leaders were at 12 under for the tournament, two strokes
ahead of Brad Bryant, James Mason and John Harris. Tom Kite, Jim Thorpe, D.A.
Weibring and Don Pooley were 9 under, easily within striking
distance going into the final round.

Eger, who earned a spot on the Champions Tour through qualifying
school three years ago, hit an excellent approach on the 18th from
219 yards within 5 feet, setting up an eagle that got him to 12
under and briefly gave him the outright lead.

"I hit a very good 5-wood that just hit and trickled up
there," he said.

Moments earlier, he had bogeyed No. 17, a par-3 that is lined by
a pond and protected by a greenside boulder. Eger, who started the
day at 4 under, blundered on his tee shot, sailing it left into the
water.

"It was a poor tee shot," he said. "I was disappointed I'd
done that, but I was more comfortable after the drop."

The seniors continued to attack the par-72 Tournament Players
Course at Snoqualmie Ridge, which yielded 29 birdies and four
eagles Saturday.

"I really like the course," Hatalsky said. "There are some
issues you have to get past. You have to get what the golf course
gives you."

Eger won only $31,014 as a player in 58 PGA Tour events, then
changed jobs. As a PGA Tour and USGA official from 1982-95, he was
responsible for marking tee boxes and deciding pin placements at
tournaments.

"I heard a lot of blame," he said. "I had a lot of players
angry about bad weather, but hopefully not too many tee markers or
pin placements."

About five years ago, the 53-year-old Eger decided to try his
hand as a touring pro again. Since joining the Champions Tour
through qualifying school in 2002, he has taken great care not to
complain about how the golf courses are set up.

"I've tried not to voice my opinion about anything," Eger
said. "It's a hard job they have."

Hatalsky, who began the day in a four-way tie atop the
leaderboard, missed a chance to grab the second-round lead outright
when his 6-foot birdie attempt on the 18th green lipped just under
the cup.

Still, it was a solid round -- his second straight 66. And for
the second straight day, Hatalsky used a run of five straight
birdies on the back nine.

"It's a great back nine," he said. "It's got a nice flow to
it. I just happened to play well on that back nine. Now I've got to
figure out the first nine, somehow hit the greens and make some
putts."

Stadler, meanwhile, birdied the 18th for his eight birdie on the
day and a second-day 65 after starting one stroke behind four
leaders at 5 under. Pooley also shot a 64, tying Eger for the
tournament's lowest round so far.

Pooley had four birdies on each side. He capped his round with a
birdie on the 18th, hitting a tough flop over the corner of a
bunker from the left side of the green. Then he rolled in a 23-foot
putt.

"Good putting makes up for a lot of mistakes," Pooley said.