Andres Gonzales turns exemption into 66

IRVING, Texas -- Of the eight players receiving an HP Byron Nelson sponsor exemption, Andres Gonzales made the most of his chance in Thursday's first round.

Gonzales, making his first PGA Tour start of the season, birdied five of his first nine holes and shot a 4-under 66. A year ago, Gonzales played in 21 Tour events and survived the cut only nine times. He ranked 192 on the money list.

Among local players, TCU product J.J. Henry shot 68, a score matched by Chad Campbell of Colleyville and Harrison Frazar of Dallas.

Notes: The 528-yard par 4 No. 3 at TPC Four Seasons played as the most difficult in the first round of the HP Byron Nelson with a 4.39 stroke average. Only nine birdies were recorded compared to 43 bogeys and 13 double bogeys or worse.

No. 7, a 542-yard par 5, ranked as the easiest hole, playing to a 4.54 stroke average, thanks in part to six eagles. Only five holes played to an average under par Thursday.

A hole that dares players to take a chance is No. 11, a 323-yard par 4. Of the 22 players going for the green with their tee shots, four found the putting surface. No. 11 yielded one eagle.

Attendance for the first round was 40,000.