2019 U.S. Open First Round Highlights

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U.S. Open First Round
PEBBLE BEACH, CALIFORNIA - JUNE 13: Justin Rose of England plays a shot from the 11th tee during the first round of the 2019 U.S. Open at Pebble Beach Golf Links on June 13, 2019 in Pebble Beach, California. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

The 119th U.S. Open is officially underway at Pebble Beach Golf Links. The defending back to back champion Brooks Koepka is looking to make it three in a row as he stayed in the mix Thursday with a 2-under round of 69. That leaves him four strokes back with the lead set by another major champion.

Often referred to as one of the best yet to win a major, Rickie Fowler set the pace early on with a 5-under 66. Looking like the score to stand Fowler was joined by Louis Oosthuizen, Xander Schaueffele and Aaron Wise in what would become a four-way tie for second. With just two holes to play, Justin Rose took control to quietly and confidently climb to a remarkable 6-under par round of 65.

Rose’s opening round matched Tiger Woods for the lowest round at Pebble Beach in U.S. Open history. From the biggest names in golf to amateurs and sectional qualifiers around the world, the opening round of the 2019 U.S. Open was full of memorable highlights.

Rose matches Record Low

With a record of total eagles made in the field in the opening round of the U.S. Open, Justin Rose added his name to that list at the par-5 518-yard 6th hole. Rose set up a routine putt to finish thanks to a massive second shot from 235 yards out.

From over 26 feet away and just one hole left to play, 2018 Olympic gold medalist crowded the leaderboard with a clutch birdie at 17.

With a shot at the outright lead and a share of U.S. Open history at Pebble Beach, Rose buried his birdie putt at par-5 18th for just his 22nd total putt of the day.

Top Names make Top Shots

The major machine, Brooks Koepka, knows what to do when the spotlight is on. The 2019 PGA Championship winner turned on the highlights earlier on after chipping in from just off the green for birdie at the par-3 5th.

While it wasn’t his best U.S. Open start, Tiger Woods kept the train on the tracks thanks to his impressive short game. The 2019 Masters champion built his Thursday at Pebble on the back of his putter including his lengthy par save, and crowd roaring fist pump, at the par-5 14th.

Carrying over the momentum from his RBC Canadian Open victory less than a week ago, Rory McIlroy took charge once again early at Pebble Beach. The 2011 U.S. Open champion found his speed early and often on the greens throughout Thursday’s opening 18.

Jon Rahm flirted with the top of the leaderboard as one of the early groups out on the course thanks to staying steady over the putter and sinking clutch birdies like the 36-footer at the par-4 10th.

One of the most difficult chip shots to be faced with in the opening round was no issue for reigning number one ranked golfer in the world. Needing to get up and down at the par-4 8th Dustin Johnson did just that with a picture perfect pitch from the thick greenside rough.

WIth wedge in hand once again, and seeking to complete the career grand slam, Phil Mickelson used the spin and the slope of the par-5 14th to turn in a birdie before finishing 1-over for the day.

No matter where he ended up on the green, Rickie Fowler seemingly knew his way around these tricky Pebble Beach greens. With the hole well below him, just on the fringe, Fowler sent home his third birdie of the day from just outside 10-feet.

Eagles soar throughout Pebble Beach

He may not be a household name but Callum Tarren turned in one of the biggest highlights of the day at the par-4 10th holes. From 193 yards out and in a fairway bunker the 28-year old Englishman drew the perfect line straight to the hole to get to 2-under par.

On just his third hole of the day, South Africa’s Louis Oosthuizen got to red figures early with an eagle from 95 yards out in the fairway.

Eagles were (and will be) a common theme from the first round of the U.S. Open. Xander Schaueffele not only added to that total during his round but did so to close out his round for a share of the lead.

With 36 yards out from the fairway to the pin at the par-5 14th, Hideki Matsuyama took aim and drained his pitch shot for an early eagle after starting on nine.

With a raised edge behind the hole at 14 players were able to get the ball moving on their approach shots. Ryan Sullivan did just that for eagle with his third shot from 89 yards away.

Shot of the Day

Simply stated, you can’t beat an ace. And that’s exactly what Rory Sabbatini turned in at the par-3 202-yard 12th hole.

 

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