A disastrous opening hole and two major blemishes later in his round were all that stood between Tiger Woods and a pretty solid opening round at the 118th U.S. Open.
But his triple bogey and back-to-back double bogeys were too much to come back from.
Woods played well at times but couldn’t rebound from the big mistakes and shot an eight-over 78 on Thursday at Shinnecock Hills Golf Club. He’s nine behind a pack of leaders, which includes Dustin Johnson, at one under.
“I didn’t putt well today,” Woods said. “I drove it pretty darn good for most of the day. Just never really took advantage of the opportunities. Making a triple and two doubles, not very good.”
Woods’s trouble started right away. Playing the short par-4 1st hole he had just 135 to the green for his approach, but he sailed it too far and it rolled off the green and down the slope 27 yards away. His next two chips weren’t hit hard enough to stay on the putting surface and fell back down the hill, and finally he putted on, then two-putted from seven feet for a triple-bogey.
He bogeyed the 2nd and birdied the 5th and parred every other hole on the front to turn in three-over 38. He then bogeyed 11 to drop to four over, and his scorecard got really ugly with back-to-back doubles on 13 and 14. On 13 he was just off the green in two but four-putted from there.
“I was worried about running the putt by because it’s downhill on the other side, left it short, blocked the next one, and then blocked it again,” Woods said. “Not very good.”
Woods’s second round begins at 8:02 a.m. ET on Friday off the 10th tee.