Satoshi Kodaira, Kramer Hickok Share Lead at Travelers Championship

Satoshi Kodaira
Satoshi Kodaira lines up a putt on the 14th green during the first round of the Travelers Championship at TPC River Highlands on June 24, 2021 in Cromwell, CT. (Photo by Drew Hallowell via Getty Images)

A pair of unknowns, Satoshi Kodaira and Kramer Hickok, carded matching 63s to share the first-round lead at the Travelers Championship on 7-under 63.

Hickok, who teamed with Jordan Spieth at the University of Texas, bogeyed his first hole, then made seven birdies and 10 pars the rest of the way en route to a morning 63.

“Putter certainly was,” said Hickok. “I was hitting a lot of good putts. I really only hit one bad putt on the par-5 13, and other than that, I just felt like the holes looked awfully big today.

“I got off to like the worst warmup session of the year this morning and was just hitting it everywhere, and so I really changed my strategy. I was just trying to play a little bit more conservative, hit greens, and once the putts started to fall, I just knew it really freed me up.

“So felt like I made a lot of good putts today, and the greens says are rolling so good that just the holes look big.”

Kodaira, meanwhile, carded six birdies and a hole-out eagle 2 for a share of the lead on 63.

“Very good,” said Kodaira. “Had good flow going at the beginning of the round and that continued throughout the round, and so it felt really well.”

One further back was Talor Gooch who shot a bogey-free 64 with six birdies.

A five-player logjam were T4 on 5 under 65, one ahead of six more tied for 9th-place on 4-under 66, which included three-time Travelers winner Bubba Watson.

Defending champion Dustin Johnson was even-par 70.

2021 Travelers Championship

Top-5 Leaders: First Round

Pos-Player-To Par (Rd 1)
1. Satoshi Kodaira -7 (63)
2. Kramer Hickok -7 (63)
3. Talor Gooch -6 (64)
4. Patrick Rodgers -5 (65)
4. Maverick McNealy -5 (65)
4. Brice Garnett -5 (65)
4. Beau Hossler -5 (65)
4. Henrik Norlander -5 (65)
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Material from the PGA Tour Media was used to compile this report.


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