Round 1: Notable and Quotable
By Ron Driscoll, USGA
- Cole Hammer, 15, the third-youngest qualifier in history, made a comfortable par on the first hole of his U.S. Open career and completed his day with a 7-over-par round of 77. Hammer, a high school sophomore in Houston, was caught on camera before his round saying a quick prayer. “I can’t even describe what I felt on the first tee,” Hammer said later. “It was nervous excitement. It was so cool.”
- Cody Gribble, 24, of Dallas, finished in a tie for 21st in last year’s U.S. Open at Pinehurst No. 2. Gribble, who has just one top-10 finish in 11 starts on the Web.com Tour this year, shot a 2-under-par 68 on Thursday and is tied for seventh after Round 1.Of the U.S. Open, he said, “I guess it suits me a little bit, yeah.”
- Dustin Johnson’s and Henrik Stenson’s 65s are the lowest scores to co-lead the U.S. Open since Jack Nicklaus and Tom Weiskopf shot 63s (7 under) at Baltusrol in 1980.
- Quotable: “I’m not that old,” Henrik Stenson, 39, when asked whether Chambers Bay would be challenging for older players to walk. Stenson’s 5-under 65 included birdies on four of his last five holes.
- “You can’t really overpower this golf course. It definitely is a second-shot course,” said long-hitting Dustin Johnson.
- Chambers Bay played to a total of 7,497 yards in Round 1, with three of the four par 3s playing at or below their listed yardages.
- The 12th hole yielded 11 eagles in the opening round, the highest number of eagles recorded on a single hole in any U.S. Open round since 1985, when hole statistics were first recorded. The previous high came in 2014 at Pinehurst No. 2, when the par-5 fifth hole yielded eight eagles in the third round.
- Twenty-five players broke par in the first round, the most in an opening round since 29 players broke par in 1992 at Pebble Beach.
- The opening-round scoring average of 72.72 is the lowest since 2003 at Olympia Fields (72.68). Last year’s opening-round average at Pinehurst was 73.23.
- Colin Montgomerie, 51, opened with a 1-under-par 69 and is tied for 14th place. Last year, Kenny Perry tied for 28th place at Pinehurst, the best result for any player who got into the field by winning the U.S. Senior Open.
- Sunday, June 21, will be the 50-year anniversary of Gary Player’s victory in the 1965 U.S. Open, which completed the career Grand Slam for the globetrotting South African. Player, 79, was on-site Thursday and said: “I traveled more miles … and went to all these different places and played and promoted the game to the best of my ability. So I hope I played a role in growing the game internationally.”
- 100: Approximate labor hours required to rake the bunkers at Chambers Bay each day of the U.S. Open.
Compiled by Ron Driscoll, manager of editorial services for the USGA. Email him at email@example.com.