2022 PNC Championship Leaderboard: Tiger, Charlie Woods on the hunt as Team Thomas leads after Round 1
There were plenty of birdies in the first round of the 2022 PNC Championship as the teams shot out of the gates of the Ritz Carlton Golf Club. Standing above the rest was a couple who have had their fair share of success at this event: 2020 champions Justin Thomas and his father, Mike. The 40-year-old two-time PGA Championship winner and PGA professional was exquisite at par 72 on Saturday shooting a 15-under 57 to hold a two-shot lead over Team Singh and Team Woods at 13-under .
Playing in the two-person scramble format, Team Thomas turned up in the final matchup of the day alongside Tiger and Charlie Woods. The two close families battled back and forth for most of the day before an eagle from Justin’s putter on the par-5 14th propelled Team Thomas into a share of the lead with Team Singh, who were already in the clubhouse. .
Additional birdies on two of their last four holes gave Team Thomas a significant advantage heading into tomorrow’s final round. With 11 birdies, two eagles and just five par, Justin and Mike are in prime position to capture their second PNC championship title in the last three years.
1. Team Thomas (-15)
Justin looked great last month, finishing the Hero World Challenge on a high note and dominating The Match 7. He continued this quality play on Saturday, and with timely help from his father, the two were able to get to 15-under. . — good for the lowest second round in tournament history. Hitting off-speed wedges, booming drives and accurate putts, the two will be a tough duo to chase on Sunday.
“We’re just here to have fun and play golf,” Thomas said. “Obviously the course is right in front of you, great fairways, great greens and I really enjoy putting when I can see a putt in front of me and it helps quite a bit. Poor dad is sadly the guinea pig in each and every I hole them, but sometimes when I give it a good read, it hits it.”
T2. Team Singh, Team Woods (-13)
4. Team Langer (-12)
T5. Team Daly, Team Spieth, Team Cink, Team Leonard, Team O’Meara, Team Lehman (-11)
The Woods team came into the week in the minds of most and showed grit and common sense on Saturday. With Tiger playing with plantar fasciitis in his right foot and Charlie dealing with a nagging left ankle injury, despite not feeling 100%, they remained within easy reach of Team Thomas. Nearly trailing Team Daly in the final round last year, and at one point 11 birdies in a row that fateful day, something similar will have to wait if they are to catch their good friends who they will be playing with for the second day in a row. .
“This is what I see at home all the time, I’m used to it,” Tiger said of Charlie’s game. “Unfortunately, this isn’t the game plan we originally planned. His ankle doesn’t feel exactly right, so I had to land a couple more punches than I normally would. Obviously, it was a great day. We’ve got in a bit of heat there in the middle part of the round, I didn’t take advantage of it towards the end, but we are in a great position for tomorrow.”
So what did Tiger and Charlie look like?
Since last year, the two have now signed for back-to-back under-60 rounds in this format. At the start of the day, it didn’t look like it was going to go as well as it did at the end, as the Woods team found themselves just 1 down on the first three holes. Prompted by a nifty wedge drive from Charlie, Tiger took the wheel as he unearthed some magic both on and around the green.
Highlighted by an eagle chip-in on the par-5 fifth, Team Woods caught fire heading to the inside half as they played holes 4-11 in 9-under style. Some hairy situations arose when Tiger was called upon to make torque-clutch putts one too many times in the later stages of his round. And while just three birdies over the course of the last seven holes will leave them both wanting more, they remain at the center of this championship and just two shots behind Team Thomas.
Spieth Magic runs in the family
When you think of law-defining golf shots, Jordan Spieth immediately comes to mind, but it became clear Saturday that he’s not the only member of the Spieth family with the magic touch. Playing alongside his father, Shawn, Team Spieth shot an 11-under 61 thanks in part to a couple of jaw-dropping moments around the green for the pair.
The youngest competitor in the event’s history steals the show
Playing alongside his mother, Annika Sorenstam, 11-year-old Will McGee stole the show on Saturday. Walking putts and hitting delicate wedge shots, McGee quickly became a fan favorite of those who came out to watch the action and helped his hall of famer mother on the path to a 10-under 62. pair.