Steve Wheatcroft shot a career-best 9-under 62 on Thursday to take a one-shot lead in the John Deere Classic.
Wheatcroft birdied seven of the last nine holes to finish a shot ahead of Michael Kim. Johnson Wagner, Nick Taylor, Andres Romero and Joel Dahmen shot opening-round 64s. Francesco Molinari, who won the Quicken Loans National two weeks ago, was among a group of players three strokes back.
Zach Johnson shot 69 and three-time John Deere winner Steve Stricker finished at 1-under 70.
Defending champion Bryson DeChambeau, the highest-ranked player in the field, withdrew because of a right shoulder injury.
DeChambeau, who won the Memorial Tournament earlier this season, first tweaked his shoulder on a shot out of the rough on the second hole. He pulled out after an awkward tee shot on No. 16.
“Look, I’m 24. I’m not that old. But I’ve used my body quite a bit. I’ve hit a lot of golf balls,” DeChambeau said. “I’ve just got to take care of my body a little better.”
European PGA: American Luke List equaled the Gullane course record with a 7-under-par 63 to start the Scottish Open. List moved into the lead with his ninth birdie on the 15th hole and held it to finish the round ahead by one stroke. He was followed by five players in a tie for second; Rickie Fowler, Lee Westwood, Robert Rock, Scott Fernandez of Spain, and Jens Dantorp of Sweden. Masters champion Patrick Reed was part of an eight-strong group a shot further back following a 65, with Danny Willett continuing his resurgence with a 66, and Olympic champion Justin Rose returning a 67. Phil Mickelson shot 70.
LPGA: Thidapa Suwannapura shot a 6-under-par 65 to take the first-round lead at the Marathon Classic. Suwannapura, who has three top-10 finishes in 117 career LPGA Tour events, birdied five of the final six holes, including the par-5 18th at Highland Meadows. Seven players, including defending champion I.K. Kim and former No. 1 Yani Tseng, were a stroke behind at 66. Sei Young Kim, who shot an LPGA Tour record 31-under 257 to win last week’s event in Wisconsin, was four shots back.
PGA Tour Champions: Kenny Perry and Mike Small shot 7-under 65s to share a one-stroke lead in the first round of the Constellation Senior Players Championship. Bart Bryant, Glen Day and 2015 U.S. Senior Open champion Jeff Maggert were one stroke back in the fourth of five majors on the PGA Tour Champions schedule. Defending champion Scott McCarron was in a pack at 5 under, while three-time Senior Players winner Bernhard Langer and Vijay Singh were another shot back at Exmoor Country Club. David Toms, coming off a win at the U.S. Senior Open, shot 2 over.
Senior Women: Elaine Crosby shot a 3-under-par 70 at Chicago Golf Club for the lead after one round of the inaugural U.S. Senior Women’s Open. A winner of two tournaments in 17 LPGA seasons, the 60-year-old Crosby owns a one-shot advantage over Trish Johnson, Laura Davies and Liselotte Neumann. Crosby started on the back nine with a 3-under-par 34 and made just one bogey on the day at one of the oldest 18-hole courses in the U.S. Johnson, who won the first Senior LPGA Championship in 2017, birdied four of the five par-5 holes. Helen Alfredsson shot a 72, while Juli Inkster, Jean Bartholomew, Marilyn Lovander and Alicia Dibos matched par. The first 72-hole USGA championship for women 50 and older began with a tee shot by the oldest player, 79-year-old JoAnne Carner. Carner shot her age.