I told Mike he always makes the cut at Senior Opens west of the Mississippi and I was right on. So Mike starts today at 9:17 am mountain time paired with fellow low amateur Jeff Wilson. The Californian plays a lot of amateur golf and at 47 shot 62 in the US Amateur. So should be a great match.
Thanks by the way to John Musselman, Ashley Fox and Marybeth Finster for supplying reports, pictures and videos from the course. Here’s first hole coverage. Rolex says right on time.
Not a great start—gotta be a big emotional letdown after the tension of having to make some big shots to clear the cut line just a little more than 12 hours earlier. Two bogeys to start, then 2 pars, including a par save off a spectator on the 601 yard par 5 third. Wilson, meanwhile, starts off -1 through 5 holes to take a 3 shot lead in the low amateur contest.
Both guys settle in, Mike +2 at the turn and Jeff -2. Mike goes bogey/bird to start the inward nine, Jeff matches with 2 pars. But Mike pars the next five, while Jeff bogies 14 and 16. The tide turns on 17, when Mike knocks in his second bird of the day.
So that puts Mike just one behind his partner. Both par 18. So two really good rounds from the top amateurs in this Open championship. Both have a great chance to take home the top amateur prize at the end of play Sunday.
Your humble webmaster, forced to follow from afar . . .
PS This is the guy Mike hit on #3. Finster treated him and his wife to lunch in the clubhouse after the round. Golf, like karma, is a boomerang.