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SOUTHAMPTON, Bermuda – Scottie Scheffler closed with a bogey for a 9-under 62 and a one-stroke lead Thursday after the first round of the PGA Tour’s inaugural Bermuda Championship.
Scheffler played his opening nine at hilly Port Royal Golf Club in 6-under 29, making an eagle on the par-5 17th. He added birdies on Nos. 2, 4, 6 and 7. In position to birdie in for a 59, he parred the par-3 eighth and dropped the stroke on the par-4 ninth.
“You think about it a little bit,” Scheffler said about a 59. “The eagle putt on seven was pretty close and then on eight, felt like I hit a pretty good putt, just misread it. I guess kind of lost a little momentum.”
Port Royal was the site of the PGA Grand Slam of Golf from 2009 through 2014.
“It’s very hilly,” Scheffler said. “The green speeds are a little slower than what we’re used to, but that’s kind of what you have to do on a piece of property like this because if the wind picks up and the greens are too quick, then all of a sudden we can’t play golf.”
The 23-year-old former University of Texas player won twice last year on the Korn Ferry Tour and earned fully exempt PGA Tour status by leading the Korn Ferry’s combined points list for the regular season and finals. He tied for seventh in September at The Greenbrier in his first start of the season and made the cuts in his other three events.
“I think it’s just a lot busier out here,” Scheffler said. “The courses are maybe a little bit harder, but the golf’s not much of an adjustment. There’s just a little more activity, a lot more of you guys, more club reps, more people around. Kind of try and stay in my own place.”
Wes Roach was second. He eagled the par-5 seventh, but also finished with a bogey on No. 9.
“It blew some early,” Roach said. “It didn’t blow near as much today as it had the last couple days around here. The course is a little bit more gettable with the wind laid down a touch.”
Rob Oppenheim, Bo Hoag and Russell Knox shot 64. Oppenheim birdied seven of the first eight holes, then parred the final 10.
“It’s kind of a dream start to come out here and birdie seven of the first eight,” Oppenheim said. “Made a lot of putts. … I didn’t play much different, just the putter was hot one nine and kind of a little cold the last nine.”
John Senden opened with a 65.
Lanto Griffin, making his first start since winning the Houston Open three weeks ago, shot 71.