John Huh needs a good week to ensure he makes the FedEx Cup playoffs and he’s off to a great start.
The 32-year-old Huh, from Los Angeles and Cal State Northridge, posted a career-best, 9-under-par 61 to take a two-stroke lead over Sungjae Im of South Korea after the first round of the 83rd Wyndham Championship at Sedgefield Country Club in Greensboro, N.C.
The Wyndham is the final event of the PGA Tour regular season and the FedEx Cup playoffs begin next week with the top 125 players in the point standings teeing it up in the FedEx St. Jude Classic at TPC Southwind in Memphis, Tenn.
“It’s kind of strange because like I mentioned earlier, I wasn’t really feeling great with my game and (to) shoot my career low, it’s kind of weird,” said Huh, who began the day at No. 120 in the point standings but now is projected to be inside the top 100. “Sort of mixed feelings, but I’ll take this any day.
“I know what’s on the line, I know how important this tournament would be. At the same time, you’ve just got to go and play, and I think I did that really well today. I hit it close enough, gave myself a chance. The longest putt I made was for eagle, but other than that, I put it pretty much inside 10 feet and made all those.”
Huh, whose only PGA Tour victory came in the 2012 Mayakoba Golf Classic, made five of his eight birdies in a row through the eighth hole and sank a 39-foot eagle putt at No. 15 while beating his previous career-low score of 62, which he has achieved twice.
Im, who captured the Shriners Children’s Open earlier this season for his second PGA Tour victory, tied for second recently in the 3M Open and is 15th in the FedEx Cup standings, made a 15-foot eagle putt at No. 5 and a 21-footer for another eagle at No. 15, plus four birdies and his lone bogey on the fourth hole in a 63.
Brandon Wu of Danville and Stanford carded a bogey-free 64 and is tied for third with Peter Malnati, who made a 28-foot eagle putt on the fifth hole, added five birdies and had his lone bogey at No. 16.
Aaron Wise of Lake Elsinore holed a 30-foot eagle putt at No. 15 en route to a 65 and is tied for fifth with Ryan Moore, who birdied four of his last six holes, Brian Stuard, who had four birdies on the front nine, Cameron Percy of Australia, who made five birdies in six holes through No. 7, Austin Smotherman, who was bogey-free, Alex Smalley, who had three birdies on each nine, and Ben Kohles, who had four birdies on his back nine.
Two-time major champion Zach Johnson shot 67 and is in a tie for 22nd that includes former world No. 1 Jason Day of Australia, 2020-21 PGA Tour Rookie of the Year Will Zalatoris is tied for 107th at 71, and defending champion Kevin Kisner struggled to a 73 and is tied for 132nd.
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