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Valdosta, GA (Sports Network) - Ryan Spears shot 6-under-par 66 on Thursday and grabbed the first-round lead at the South Georgia Classic.

Spears, who finished 11th at the Chile Classic this season, picked up six birdies during his bogey free-round -- good for a 1-stroke lead over Philip Pettitt, Jr., Troy Merritt and Bhavik Patel.

Ariel Canete, Dusty Fielding, Tyrone Van Aswegen, Woody Austin, Duffy Waldorf, Will MacKenzie, Alexandre Rocha and Scott Gutschewski share fifth place after opening-round 68s at Kinderlou Forest Golf Club.

Two-time PGA Tour winner Daniel Chopra and 15 others shot 69, while current money list leader Edward Loar and John Daly ended the opening round knotted at 2-under-par 70 with large group.

More to follow.

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