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updated: 7/3/2011 12:13 AM

Fowler, Watney share AT&T National lead

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Associated Press

Before he even teed off, Rickie Fowler knew this was going to be a different day at the AT&T National.

The course record already had been matched, with several other low rounds in progress at suddenly soft Aronimink Golf Club in Newton Square, Pa.

One thought crossed his mind: Go time.

That's the message Fowler always puts on Twitter right before he plays, and off he went.

He birdied six of his opening 10 holes -- and missed two other chances inside 10 feet. He wound up with a 6-under 64 on Saturday and a share of the lead with Nick Watney, who set the course record with a 62.

"I got out, and my game has been feeling good all week," Fowler said. "Went out and started off well, hit some good shots and kept moving from there."

Watney took awhile to get moving. He made a mess of the par-5 ninth and was even-par on the front nine, going nowhere. What happened after that, not even Watney can explain.

"The hole looked really big on the back," said Watney, a World Golf Championship winner. "The ball was going where I was looking, and by the time I looked up, I was 8 under."

That's 8 under for his round, and the back nine alone.

After 3 straight birdies, he then made a 30-foot eagle putt on the par-5 16th.

Facing a dangerous pin on the par-3 17th, he went after it with a wedge to 5 feet and another birdie. Watney shot 27 on the back, missing by one the PGA Tour's nine-hole record.

When the massacre of Aronimink was over -- 40 of 76 players shot in the 60s, including 14 rounds at 66 or better -- nothing had really been settled except for a lot of birdies being made.

Fowler and Watney were at 9-under 201, 1 shot ahead of 36-hole leader K.J. Choi, who came to life late in his round with 2 birdies on the final three holes to salvage a 69.

Steve Marino, who had a 63 to own the course record for about 20 minutes, was 2 shots behind at 7-under.

Montreal Championship:

Taiwan's Lu Chien-soon shot a 9-under 63 to match the course record and take a 1-stroke lead over John Cook after the second round of the Champions Tour's Montreal Championship in Blainville, Quebec.

Lu bogeyed the opening hole, then had 10 birdies in a 13-hole stretch from Nos. 5 to 17 to reach 16 under at Fontainebleau Golf Club.

He tied the course record set last year by D.A. Weibring in the inaugural tournament and matched Friday by Cook and John Huston.

French Open:

Mark Foster of England shot a 3-under 68 to share a 1-shot lead with James Morrison after the third round at the French Open in Saint-Quentin-En-Yvelines, France.

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