Sights, sounds and best moments from the first round of the US Open 2022

Sights, sounds and best moments from the first round of the US Open 2022

BROOKLINE, Mass. — Perhaps talk of LIV Golf vs. the PGA Tour will subside for a few days, with the start of the US Open at the Country Club officially here. Or, at least, until Phil Mickelson returns to the course on Friday. Mickelson, the face of LIV Golf, is still looking for the missing piece to his Grand Slam CV: a victory at the US Open.

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In the first round, two kids ran away with defending champion Jon Rahm’s ball on the 18th hole. Rahm got a free drop on the hole while the kids hung up a keepsake.

Adam Hadwin was the 1-under leader at the end of day one at 4 under. Rory McIlroy is part of a pack chasing him at 3 under, while Phil Mickelson has struggled mightily and is near the bottom of the standings at 8 over.

Here’s a look back at the sights and sounds of day one.

LIV almost really meant 54 (more)

The 15 LIV Golf players on the course this week, for the most part, struggled through the first round of the US Open. How bad was that? They almost combined to derive their name.

LIV, in Roman numerals, is 54.

LIV’s 15 players put up a cumulative total Thursday of 53 overs. Dustin Johnson (2 under) and James Piot 1 (under) were the only ones in the group to beat 70. Jed Morgan had the worst day, posting 12 of 82. Mickelson wasn’t much better, shooting 78. Louis Oosthuizen, who was playing with Mickelson, made the rounds in 77.

Dustin Johnson: 68
James Piot: 69
Shaun Norris: 70 years old
Patrick Roseau: 70
Richard Bland: 70
Bryson de Chambeau 71
Sam Horsfield: 73
Sergio Garcia: 74
Talor Gooch: 74
Kevin Na: 75
Jinichiro Kozuma: 76
Branden Grace: 76
Louis Oosthuizen: 77
Phil Mickelson: 78
Jed Morgan: 82

Not a good start for Mickelson

After making the turn at 5 of 40, Mickelson had a bogey on the par-4 10 to move to 6 over. He finally birdied the par-3 11th with an 8-foot putt. But then things really got away from Lefty. He made a double bogey on the 12th hole, after firing his tee shot into the deep rough on the right. He needed two shots to get back on the fairway and ended up carding a double bogey 6 to drop to 7. –Marc Schlabach

Phil Mickelson put four putts on the par-3 6th hole after landing his tee shot on the green about 15 feet from the hole. After missing a potential birdie putt, Mickelson pushed the putt from across the hole and missed the return putt for bogey.

“Wow,” he thought to himself as the third putt couldn’t find the hole.

Mickelson has yet to birdie and sits at 5 after six holes. –Paolo Uggetti

Koepka’s first game

Two-time US Open champion Brooks Koepka hit them all on the 15th hole.

Left with 205 yards on the hole after hitting his tee shot down the middle of the fairway, Koepka misfired his approach shot left. His ball flew into the stands and bounced before coming to rest.

After landing a free drop at the base of the stand, Koepka reached about 9 feet and landed a par putt. He was 2 over after seven holes. — Marc Schlabach

The club throws to the top

After catching fire in the back half of his turn and reaching 4 under, Rory McIlroy tried to go for the pin at the par-4 9th but missed long and a right. He had backed down twice and changed clubs beforehand. Seeing him land, McIlroy immediately threw his club. When he reached the green, he continued to point to the left, waving at the spot he had, he put it there instead. Frustration ran through his bogey putt. As he waited for Hideki Matsuyama to finish, McIlroy lowered his white hat to his face. Still, his 3-under round was good at a tie for the lead.

Earlier in his round, with the crowd already four and five deep around the 18th green, McIlroy had a slight roar on Thursday as he drained a 16-foot birdie putt to go 2 under and 1 stroke from the beginning. The 2011 US Open champion started in the 10th start early Thursday morning and is coming off a thrilling victory at the RBC Canadian Open last week as well as two top-10 finishes at this year’s two majors.

“It’s been eight years since I won a major, and I just want to do one again,” McIlroy said after the round.

He’s trying to win a major the week after winning a PGA Tour event, having won the RBC Canadian Open last week. The last player to do so? McIlroy. He won the 2014 PGA Championship the week after winning the WGC-Bridgestone. No player has ever won the US Open after winning the PGA Tour the previous week. The closest to doing so was Arnold Palmer, who finished tied for second in 1963, according to ESPN Stats & Information research.

— Uggetti and Schlabach

Turkeys on the course

Backyard battles!

A near ace!

Justin Rose, the winner of the 2013 US Open, had a great shot to start his round.

Where is the after party?

After shooting 3 under, Joel Dahmen, held a share of the lead when he finished his first lap. He’s never finished higher than 10th in a major before, so maybe he’s nervous and could relax before the second round.

It doesn’t look like that.

Ben Rector is a Nashville-based pop singer/songwriter who has released seven studio albums.

Golf can be cruel

Golf is tough, even for the best players in the world. Chances are most players will have a bad break at this week’s US Open, which is considered golf’s toughest test.

McIlroy discovered it Thursday on the par-4 fifth hole of the Country Club. After pushing his tee shot to the right, his ball ended up in the thick grass above a bunker. His feet were well below the ball, so he only managed to knock it down about 10 yards – into another fairway bunker. He slammed his club twice wildly into the sand.

Remarkably, McIlroy was able to get up and down from the sand to save par. –Schlabach

It’s Matt McCarty’s birdie attempt on the fifth hole. I thought the blocked shots in the Boston area were coming later Thursday.

Adam Scott, the 2013 Masters champion, had this shot that only went three yards. He did, however, save the par on the hole.

LIV Golf is not far away

LIV Golf made sure to get the message across that although it’s not their event, their guys are still there.

First birdies

Defending champion Jon Rahm is one of the golfers out early, along with Max Homa, former Masters and US Open champion Jordan Spieth and two-time major winner Collin Morikawa.

There’s more than golf here

Of course, New England fans are here to see some golf. But forgive them if they get a little distracted. Something else is on their minds – about 7.2 miles down the road.

The Boston Celtics are hoping to keep their NBA title hopes alive on Thursday in Game 6 against the Golden State Warriors. (9 p.m. ET on ABC). The Celtics are down 3-2 in the series.

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