Collin Morikowa rebounded from his first missed cut as a pro two weeks ago at the Travelers Championship by firing a seven-under 65 at famed Muirfield Village Golf Club to sit alone atop the leaderboard after the first round of the Workday Charity Open.
“Got off to a good start,” Morikowa said. “It’s a beautiful track. It’s a very tough course obviously, but you just have to map your way around it. You’ve got to be really smart. If you’re not in the fairway, you’ve got to make sure you play smart. So I was playing smart but I felt good with my irons, so I was able to attack some pins when they were accessible”
The Workday Charity Open is a one-off event that is taking the place of the cancelled John Deere Classic and is the first time in 63 years that the PGA TOUR is hosting back-to-back events at the same golf course with the Memorial Tournament set for next week at Muirfield Village.
Justin Thomas is sitting three shots back in a tie for seventh after opening with a bogey-free 68.
“It was a good score for how I feel like I played. I didn’t play bad, but I definitely didn’t play great by any means,” Thomas said.
There were two aces in the first round with Jason Kokrak getting a hole-in-one on No. 16 with a 7-iron and Keegan Bradley acing No. 4 with a 6-iron.
“I hit a 6-iron, it was 210, and I hit the shot, and there was probably five or six people up by the green, and no one did anything,” Bradley said. “A guy raised his hand, and I said to my caddie Chad, I said, a guy raised his hand. Normally that happens when they go in, but no one did anything else, so we walked up to the green, I fixed my ball mark, I’m looking all over the green for it, and someone just goes, “It’s in the hole,” like really casually. It was just bizarre.”
Bradley would go on to shoot three-under 69 and finish in a tie for 18th.
Jon Rahm, Jordan Spieth, Max Homa and Rickie Fowler all shot EVEN and are in a tie for 64th.
Rahm had it to three-under on his first nine, but struggled on his way in with three bogeys and a double bogey en route to shooting a 72.
Spieth’s up and down day included an eagle on the par-5 15th and a bogey on the par-5 7th.
Homa tweeted “Mediocre across the board but excited for the opportunity to take it low tomorrow at Muirfield Village.”
3 birdies, 3 bogeys, 12 pars (math) today. Mediocre across the board but excited for the opportunity to take it low tomorrow at Muirfield Village. Thx everyone for the support #golf
Notables who struggled on day one include reigning U.S. Open champion Gary Woodland and Phil Mickelson, who both shot one-over 73.
Mickelson got off to a great start, going out in 32, but came in at 41 in a second nine that included four bogeys and a double bogey. But Mickelson did have one particular highlight as he bombed a drive 394 yards on the par-4 17th hole.