(AP Photo/Jeff Roberson)

PGA Championship: Spieth Steady After Rough Start

August 09, 2018 - 4:18 pm

ST. LOUIS (AP) — The Latest on the PGA Championship, golf's final major of the year.

Jordan Spieth has gathered himself following a rough start, making four straight pars after starting the day with a double bogey.

In need of the PGA to complete the career grand slam, Spieth drove his opening shot into the rough, and needed two more shots to escape it en route to a 6.

Heading into the par-3 sixth, Spieth was seven back of Rickie Fowler, who played in the morning and took the lead with a 5-under 65.

Dustin Johnson, also playing in the afternoon, made three straight birdies to head into the ninth hole at 2 under.


Some of the Americans trying to earn their way onto the Ryder Cup team didn't get off to the best of starts at the PGA Championship.

That includes Phil Mickelson, though he would appear to be safe as a captain's pick. Mickelson opened with a 73, meaning his immediate goal is to make the cut. Mickelson has qualified for every Ryder Cup team since 1995. He is No. 10 in the standings, and the top eight qualify after the PGA.

Tony Finau took a scouting trip to Paris ahead of the Sept. 28-30 matches with U.S. captain Jim Furyk. Finau, who is No. 13 in the standings, played with Furyk and shot a 74. Xander Schauffele also was in that group and after being 3 over through 10 holes, he rallied for a 70.

Bryson DeChambeau is on the bubble at No. 9 in the standings. He shot 71. Webb Simpson (No. 8) opened with a 68.


Louis Oosthuizen has withdrawn from the PGA Championship less than an hour before his scheduled tee time, giving Kelly Kraft a spot in the field at Bellerive.

The official announcement was made about 10 minutes before Oosthuizen's scheduled 1:59 tee time, though Kraft has been warming up in case he got just such a chance.

He joined a group along with Thomas Pieters and Bill Haas.


If you're curious what those bandage-like patches were on Rory McIlroy as he grinded his way to a first-round 70 at the PGA Championship, they are designed to deal with wrist and forearm inflammation.

McIlroy said he hit a lot of extra balls last week at Firestone, trying to work on a few things before arriving at Bellerive. He wound up with a bit of soreness in his right arm that accompanied him to St. Louis.

McIlroy says it hurts "the most when I'm chipping, because I sort of hold the angle a bit," but he doesn't think it will affect him too much as the tournament progresses.


Tiger Woods says he's just happy to still be in the tournament after a rough start at the PGA Championship, and that his goal was to "hole a few putts and grind out a score today."

He certainly holed a few putts. But he only hit 11 of 18 greens in regulation.

As for the mid-round wardrobe change, Woods said he usually changes shirts before teeing off but there wasn't anywhere to do it between the driving range and the 10th tee. So, he waited until he came across a portable restroom and peeled off his sweat-soaked shirt.

"I just sweat a lot," he said with a grin.


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