Here are five things to know after the opening round of the 2018 Sony Open at Waialae Country Club.
1. VETERANS CO-LEAD
Chris Kirk and Zach Johnson last played at the RSM Classic in November, and despite the layoff, each finished with bogey-free 7-under par 63.
The clean round was the 94th for Johnson in his PGA Tour career, representing the third-most since 2004 (Jim Furyk-103, Charles Howell-100).
Kirk is making his eighth start at the Sony Open in Hawaii, with back-to-back top-5finishes in 2013 (T5) and 2014 (2). He has missed the cut in his last two starts at this event (2016, 2017).
2. DEFENDING CHAMP (WITH NEW CADDIE) IN HUNT
Justin Thomas, with Jim “Bones” Mackay on the bag, turned in a bogey-free 3-under 67 to sit at T20, alongside 20 other players. The Alabama star is just four shots back. A year ago, Thomas opened the Sony Open in Hawaii with an 11-under 59, becoming at the time the seventh player (eight times) to record a sub-60 round on the PGA Tour.
3. SPIETH’S BAD HOLE
Jordan Spieth finished with eight birdies, three bogeys, and one quadruple bogey on the par-4 8th hole that absolutely killed what would have been a solid opening round. Despite the ugly number, the three-time major winner is just six shots back. It marked the first time in his career he’s posted an under-par round that included a quadruple bogey.
4. KISNER’S GOES ALABAMA
Playing in the same group as Thomas, Kevin Kisner (T41) carded a 2-under 68. He wore a University of Alabama football jersey on the par-3 17th hole during the first round, paying off a wager to Thomas following his Georgia Bulldogs losing to the Crimson Tide in the College Football Playoff National Championship.
5. HOWELL HEARTS HAWAII
Charles Howell III posted an opening-round 3-under 67 (T20). It’s his 16th consecutive round in the 60s at the Sony Open in Hawaii, and 24th out of the last 25. He owns nine top-10 finishes in 16 starts at the Sony Open in Hawaii (T8-2017, T8-2014, T3-2013, T2-2012, T5-2010, 4-2009, T2-2007, T3-2005, T4-2002).
Credits: PGA Tour Media, Getty Images