Steve Wheatcroft shot a career-best 9-under 62 on Thursday to take a one-shot lead in the John Deere Classic in Silvis, Illinois.

Wheatcroft birdied seven of the last nine holes to finish a shot ahead of Michael Kim. Johnson Wagner, Nick Taylor, Andres Romero and Joel Dahmen shot opening-round 64s. Francesco Molinari, who won the Quicken Loans National two weeks ago, was among a group of players three strokes back.

Zach Johnson shot 69 and three-time John Deere winner Steve Stricker finished at 1-under 70.

MORE GOLF: Thidapa Suwannapura shot a 6-under-par 65 to take the first-round lead at the Marathon Classic in Sylvania, Ohio. Suwannapura, who has three top-10 finishes in 120 career LPGA Tour events, birdied five of the final six holes, including the par-5 18th at Highland Meadows. The Thai player had her last top-10 finish in 2014 at the Kingsmill Invitational. Her best performance this season was a tie for 18th three weeks ago in Arkansas. ...  Kenny Perry and Mike Small shot 7-under 65s to share a one-stroke lead in the first round of the Constellation Senior Players Championship in Highland Park, Illinois. ... Elaine Crosby shot a 3-under-par 70 at Chicago Golf Club for the lead after one round of the inaugural U.S. Senior Women's Open in Wheaton, Illinois.

AUTO RACING: Ben Rhodes raced to his second career NASCAR Camping World Truck Series win in front of his home state fans at Kentucky Speedway on Thursday night in Sparta, Kentucky. The Louisville native opted for only fuel on the final pit stop. The gamble paid off as he took the lead out of pit road with 24 laps remaining and then steadily pulled away from Stewart Friesen.

BASKETBALL: Wayne Ellington is returning to the Miami Heat, after nearly two weeks of waiting and wondering if he would get his wish to be back with the club for a third season. A person with direct knowledge of the terms said that Ellington accepted a $6.3 million, one-year offer that exactly matches his salary from last season.

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