Casey swung and missed from the tall fescue on No. 3, and then chipped out and it rolled all the way off the green on the other side. At 6-under 138, he trails four players by a shot as he readies for 36 more holes at Erin Hills. Of the group, it was Casey who had the wildest day.
Harman closed with two birdies and three tough pars for a 5-under 67 that gave him a one-shot lead at 12-under 204.
“If we get rain tomorrow and it gets wet and it plays soft, this place is going to get soft and you’re going to have to be aggressive and you have to make a ton of birdies”, Snedeker said. “But I’m a pretty happy man”. Jack Nicklaus and Tom Weiskopf each shot seven-under 63 in the first round at Baltusrol in the 1980 US Open.
Thomas, the 24-year-old from Kentucky who is a major away from joining the young elite in golf, only added to a year of low numbers.
His early exit was particularly perplexing because, Day said, “It’s been the best preparation I’ve had going into a major in my career”. “Even just trying to take my medicine is very, very hard”. It’s a good eight in the end. The top 18 players on the leaderboard going into the weekend have combined for zero majors.
But under sunny skies on Thursday, Erin Hills looked more friend than foe with 44 golfers breaking par to set a record for the opening round of a U.S. Open.
“The greens were still receptive to good shots, but they were firmer and faster”, said Fowler. “But you don’t really know until you put a card in your hand and you’re under the gun a little bit”, said McIlroy, who said goodbye at 5 over. “There were a couple of dicey pin placements out there that you had to be careful about, but it was still scoreable”.
“The biggest thing about this course is that the fairways are massive”, Day said. Starting on the back nine, he exchanged a birdie on 11 with a bogey on 12.
Koepka raced out to nine under early in his second round, but dropped two shots on his back nine on his way to a 70.
“I ve got a busy summer, so I m excited to play a lot of golf”.
QUOTEWORTHY: “I’m not here on the weekend, so it’s unfortunate”.
Despite all the good scoring, the world’s top 3 players missed the cut – defending champion and No. 1 Dustin Johnson (75-73), No. 2 Rory McIlroy (78-71) and No. 3 Jason Day (79-75). Johnson (+4) can’t be too upset to be travelling home to California to see his newborn baby.
Big hitters Dustin Johnson, Rory McIlroy and Jason Day were expected to thrive on the wide open fairways of Erin Hills.
Newly branded as the “ultimate test in golf”, the U.S. Open has always been famed for its toughness and Erin Hills was expected to add to that hard-man reputation. “It’s our national championship, so to be in good position and have a chance to win it, it’s special”.
McIlroy has a rib injury that has severely limited his tournament activity in recent times.
“Usually when you shoot even in a U.S. Open and you’re one off the lead, you’re not six down afterward”, J.B. Holmes said. Friday’s round included five birdies and two bogeys.
“Very frustrated with my finish”, Johnson said. Hit a lot of shots probably better today than I did yesterday.
However, after dropping another shot on the 15th, Casey regained his composure superbly to birdie the 17th and 18th, the latter being the second longest hole in major history at 676 yards.