PGA Championship 2022 live updates: Rory McIlroy's morning 65 stands, big names struggle on tough first day at Southern Hills
Rory McIroy put on a show early and Justin Thomas was impressive in the late afternoon as the PGA Championship got underway Thursday on a Southern Hills Country Course in Tulsa that is looking like it has plenty of teeth to show the world’s best.
McIlroy set the pace and ignited hopes for his fifth major win (and first since 2014) with an opening five-under-par 65. He stayed atop the leaderboard the entire day, though Thomas arguably had just as strong a round in conditions that were decidedly more challenging. Thomas, winner of the 2017 PGA, birdied the 18th hole to shoot 67.
Will Zalatoris and Tom Hoge each shot 66 in the morning, while Matt Kuchar and Abraham Ancer matched Thomas with 67s.
(Scroll down for the latest updates)
Starting on the 10th hole, Tiger Woods got off to a solid start with two birdies in his first five holes. But, clearly struggling with pain in his legs, he shot six over the rest of the round and finished with a 74.
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PGA Championship 2022 live updates (all times eastern time):
7:52 p.m.: The marquee group of the afternoon is off the course, and their expressions said they couldn't get to their cars (or the range) fast enough. World No. 1 Scottie Scheffler, No. 2 Jon Rahm and No. 3 Collin Morikawa scuffed around Southern HIlls and combined to shoot six over. Scheffler and Rahm both made lengthy par putts on 18 or it could have been worse. Scheffler shot 71 despite an eagle, while Rahm (73) made a double at the par-3 eighth. Morkawa (72) wrote down only one birdie.
7:22 p.m.: With a birdie on 18, Justin Thomas is in with the best score of the afternoon with a three-under 67. "Now that's a major championship round of golf," says David Duval of the round with only two bogeys—back-to-back blips on 8 and 9.
7:05 p.m.: With a fast-running chip-in at No. 3, Aussie Lucas Herbert has the best afernoon round going at three under. Herbert won the Bermuda Championship back in October and has one other top-10 this year—a T-7 at Arnold Palmer.
6:15 p.m.: To ESPN and the PGA of America's credit, they addressed head on Phil Mickelson's absence, which never happened at the Masters. Following a story by Gene Wojciekowski, anchor Scott Van Pelt asked analyst David Duval about his thoughts on Mickelson. Duval did not hold back. "Unfortunately, as you look at it, to me, he’s dug a hole that I struggle to see him getting out of. I don’t see the exit strategr,." he said. Duval added of Mickelson not being able to defend his title, "It is unquestionably a massive disappointment to this sport and the great fans of this sport."
5:52 p.m.: At No. 12, Scottie Scheffler just got VERY lucky with a bold (and probably too risky) shot while trying to boot a field goal between two trees. His ball caromed off a tree and came up short of going into the water. He had a tough lie up against the rough cut, but of course hit a great half-wedge to three feet. BUT, he lipped out on that one. That's a bogey and he's at one under.
5:15 p.m.: Jesse Mueller, a club pro from Arizona, is not going away. After his stunning eagle on his first hole, the 10th, he just drained a long birdie putt on No. 3 to get to one under. There are only 28 players currently in the red.
4:47 p.m.: The Rahm, Morikawa, and Scheffler group reaches the monster 249-yard long par-3 eighth and not one ball hits the green. Well, Morikawa's is mere inches onto the fringe, so we'll count that. If you're inside of 51 feet from the pin on eight, you're above average for the day—sheesh!
4:37 p.m.: The sand at Southern Hills seems to be a source of confusion for many players in the field. In the past 10 minutes, we've seen both Justin Thomas and Brooks Koepka look down at their lies with puzzled expressions after bunker shots gone awry.
4:22 p.m.: Screams echo from the background of the broadcast, and it's none other than Rickie Fowler at the seventh. He holes out from the bunker to get back to even par, prompting yelps from the Tulsa fans. Jason Day had to mark his ball in the trap next to Rickie's. Hopefully some good vibes remain when the Aussie hits his own shot.
4:15 p.m.: Brooks Koepka's early struggles continue. Things aren't looking great as he blasts out a tricky greenside bunker shot from just beneath the back lip, leaving himself a lengthy putt to save bogey at the par-3 eighth. He makes it for quite the save, but still has some major work to do, as he's four over par through eight. Yikes.
4:06 p.m.: Scottie drains his eagle putt at the fifth, the first of the day. Just the world No. 1 doing world No. 1 things. Making it look way too easy.
3:56p.m.: Scottie Scheffler bombs a 3-wood to reach the 665-yard par-5 5th in two, leaving himself a mid-range eagle putt. Rahm's attempt is similarly impressive, but runs through the green, leaving him an extremely slippery chip off of the Southern Hills grainy bermuda grass. We have a feeling we're going to be hearing a lot more about the strain around the greens this weekend.
3:46 p.m.: The marquee group of Jon Rahm, Collin Morikawa, and Scottie Scheffler continues a steady but slow start with all three players remaining even through four holes. Morikawa drains a 10-footer with some significant pace for a solid up-and-down to save par. Matthew Wolff, an Oklahoma State alum and crowd favorite this week nearly holes out for eagle from the 12th fairway. Justin Thomas sinks a short birdie putt on the fifth with confidence to get to two-under for the day.
3:26 p.m.: A roar sounds from over at the seventh, where South African Justin Harding holes out for eagle from 181 yards. With a huge high-five from his caddie, Harding gets it back to even par for the day.
3:21 p.m. Oklahoma native Talor Gooch dunks it from a greenside bunker for par on the 15th to continue a solid par streak to start off his round in home territory. In total shock, Gooch gives a bow to the crowd after the epic save.
3:10 p.m.: Tough conditions as Scottie Scheffler stays even with two pars to start his opening round. The Masters champ and World No. 1 is knotted up with Morikawa at one under, and Rahm is at one over to round out the group.
3:01 p.m.: Davis Riley will finish his day at two under and Tom Hoge will end at four under. The latter is just one back of leader Rory McIlroy with five birdies and a bogey. He's a TCU grad and looks pretty comfortable here in Oklahoma.
2:48 p.m.: An opening par for Collin Morikawa could've been much worse after a shot well to the left to start his day near the trees. Jon Rahm will follow that with a bogey and an early dropped shot. The announcers go on to state that this is one of the easier holes of the day thus far. To finish the pairing's first hole, Scottie Scheffler botches a birdie putt and will have to stick with an early par.
2:36 p.m.: Talking after his round, it's obvious that Tiger went through some noticeable pain that round but seems in relatively good spirits despite the poor start. Woods will tee off in the afternoon tomorrow, which will give him some more time for ice baths and whatever else he needs to make a charge.
One of the much-ballyhooed afternoon groupings is set to tee off as Jon Rahm, Collin Morikawa and Scottie Scheffler begin their days on the first tee. No one's playing better than Scheffler right now, coming off his dominant Masters victory, but it's not as if Morikawa and Rahm don't know how to win major events.
2:22 p.m.: That's a helluva putt from Rory McIlroy to finish his day. Looks like he might've reverse-jinxed himself after some self trash-talk on Wednesday. He birdies the final hole of his first round to shoot a 65 and enter the clubhouse as the solo leader. Jordan Spieth will hit a big putt of his own to stop the bleeding and finish his day at an opening 72. Tiger Woods will bogey the final two holes to close his day out and will finish at four over.
2:16 p.m.: "Welcome to the competition!" It's not going to get much better than that. Repping Grand Canyon University, Jesse Mueller eagles his first hole (the tenth hole) at the PGA Championship to jump into the T-5 spot.
2:07 p.m.: Tiger will bogey the seventh hole to drop to three over around the same time as Will Zalatoris nailing a long putt to take a share (with Rory and Tom Hoge) of the early lead. The three out front sit at four under. According to Justin Ray, Zalatoris leads the morning wave in strokes gained putting.
2:01 p.m.: We've left ESPN+ for ESPN now, in case you were wondering why nothing is happening on your screen. Tiger Woods and Rory McIlroy both play bunker shots, Rory's ends up much closer to the par-4 seventh. McIlroy still leads at five under with Tom Hoge just one shot behind.
1:53 p.m.: It's not a birdie-birdie-birdie finish yet, but Spieth is on the right track. After ripping a draw at the 17th, he knocks it on and drains the birdie putt to get back to two over. Woods finds the greenside bunker and gets up and down for par, keeping him at two over. McIlroy makes par and stays at five under, which is now only one shot clear of Tom Hoge, who birdies the 15th to climb to four under. Up ahead at the long par-3 eighth, Will Zalatoris pulls off a wild up-and-down par save from well over the green to keep it at three under.