Update: First-round play at the Zurich Classic of New Orleans resumed at 4:52 p.m. CDT following a 4-hour, 53-minute weather delay.

Update: PGA Tour officials have announced that play in the first round of the Zurich Classic of New Orleans is expected to resume at 4:50 p.m. Seventy-eight players had not begun their rounds when play was suspended at 11:59 a.m. with severe thunderstoms approaching the course.

Original story: The first round of the Zurich Classic of New Orleans was suspended at 11:59 a.m. because of a band of showers that moved in on TPC Louisiana with a larger cell expected to follow.

PGA Tour officials sounded the horn to players to clear the course about four minutes before rain started falling.

Brian Stuard, who is the early leader at 8-under through 17 holes, was about to hit his third shot on the par 5 18th hole when the signal to cease play came. At that point, Stuard had a bogey-free round going with eight birdies.

Two-time U.S. Open champion Retief Goosen, who shot a 6-under 30 on the front nine, was in second place at 7-under through 14 holes.

Jason Day, the world’s No. 1 player, was in a five-way tie for fourth with J.J. Henry, Geoff Ogilvy, Charles Howell III and Byeong-Hun An at 4-under.

Day and Henry had completed 15 holes, while Ogilvy, Howell and An all played 14 holes.

Follow Sheldon Mickles on Twitter, @MicklesAdvocate.