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John Cook Leads Charles Schwab Cup Championship At Harding Park

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John Cook tees off on the 17th hole during round 1 of the Charles Schwab Cup Championship at Harding Park Golf Course on November 4, 2010 in San Francisco. (Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)

John Cook tees off on the 17th hole during round 1 of the Charles Schwab Cup Championship at Harding Park Golf Course on November 4, 2010 in San Francisco. (Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)

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SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Defending champion John Cook shot a 7-under 64 on Thursday at Harding Park to take the first-round lead in the Champions Tour’s season-ending Charles Schwab Cup Championship.

Cook, the winner last year at Sonoma Golf Club, had a one-stroke lead over Fred Funk and Tom Pernice Jr.

Tom Lehman opened with a 66, Schwab Cup points leader Bernhard Langer topped a group at 67, and Fred Couples had a 69. Couples needs to win to catch Langer in the two-man race for the $1 million annuity. Even if Couples wins, Langer would take the top prize with a two-way tie for fourth or better.

Cook birdied six of the first 12 holes, making four in row on Nos. 9-12, also birdied No. 16 and overcame an errant approach shot on No. 18 to save par and keep the lead.

(© 2010 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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