AUGUSTA, Ga. — Craig and Kevin Stadler ("Walrus" and "Smallrus") became the first father-son combo to play in the same
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Bill Haas overcome a first-hole bogey Thursday to shoot a four-under-par 68, good for the first-round lead. Father Jay Haas played in 22 Masters, making 19 cuts. Uncle Jerry Haas participated in 1985. An uncle from his mother's side, Dillard Pruitt, teed it up here in 1992 and '93.
Oh, and great-uncle Bob Goalby won the 1968 event, avoiding a playoff after Argentina's Roberto De Vicenzo signed for the wrong Sunday score.
Bill Haas, 31, said Goalby encourages him by saying, "You're a better player than the scores you shoot."
Jay got Bill on Augusta National when he was in high school, and Bill remembers getting a "full day's worth" — 27 holes plus the par-three course. He caddied in the 1999 Masters for his father, who finished tied for third in 1995.
"He's the person I idolized golf-wise," Bill said. "I wasn't interested in the Masters. I was interested in my dad's score at the Masters."
Jay won nine times on the
"I don't beat him much, honestly," Bill said. "Even now."
Jay never won a major, tying for third in the 1999
"I think he deserved a major," Bill said. "But as a family, we all know that he left it out there."
Bill dominated at Wake Forest and was viewed as cocky when he reached the tour in 2006. His fine career includes a heavyweight champion's payday of $11.44 million at the 2011 Tour Championship.
His only flaws are a suspect short-iron game and a fiery temperament that sometimes costs him. That's where Scott Gneiser hopes to help. Gneiser carried
"We're still in our honeymoon phase," the caddie said. "If something goes wrong, we shake it off and get to the next hole instead of going nuts on each other."
There goes that
He chunked another chip and eventually made a quadruple-bogey 9, the highest score on any hole Thursday.
With a back-nine 44 that gave him an eight-over 80, the reigning PGA Champion will start Friday tied for 90th in the 97-player field.
Oldies and goodies
In a tournament packed with a bunch of young newcomers, the 50-and-over crowd made a bit of a stand in the first round.
Miguel Angel Jimenez was leading the tournament for a time before stumbling on the back nine. 1992 champion Fred Couples was on the leaderboard himself before tying the 50-year-old Jimenez with a 71 that left both players three shots off the lead.
And two-time Bernard Langer managed to shoot even par in his 31st Masters.
"A 72 is not that shabby," the 56-year-old Langer said.
Power still counts, but sometimes the older players can make up for it by knowing where to put the ball and being crafty.
"Can a 50-year-old win here?" the 54-year-old Couples asked. "I think so. I'm one of them."
Luke Donald got hit with a two-stroke penalty after his round. He failed to exit a greenside bunker on No. 9 and touched the sand with his club before his second attempt. The penalty pushed Donald's score to an ugly 79. "Pretty dumb mistake," Donald tweeted. …