Fairways And Roughs Title

Every bouncing back; Scott benefiting from new schedule

By PGA Tour News
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MEMPHIS, Tenn. – Notes and observations from the first round of the FedEx St. Jude Classic, where Matt Every took the lead among the early finishers with a 6-under-par 64, and Scott Brown, Stewart Cink and Colombian Web.com Tour graduate Sebastian Munoz matched him in the afternoon. Charl Schwartzel, making his first start here since 2010, and Australian Matt Jones got around in 65 and were one back. For more coverage from TPC Southwind, click here for the Daily Wrap-up. EVERY LOOKS TO RALLY The winner of the 2014 and 2015 Arnold Palmer Invitational presented by MasterCard, Matt Every came into this week 206th in driving accuracy (43.23 percebt) and 223rd in FedExCup points. He had missed 17 cuts in 21 starts, withdrawn twice, and made $33,091. Then came Thursday, when he hit 10 of 14 fairways, and 11 of 18 greens in regulation. He also took just 24 strokes on the greens, making 124 feet, 2 inches worth of putts.  The biggest difference, he said: no more issues with the driver. “I drove it really well today,” said Every, 33. “So I’ll just kind of ride that into my next couple days.” Still, even after shooting his best score this season by five shots, and just his fourth round in the 60s in what has been a trying year, he didn’t want to look too far ahead. “I haven’t played well in a couple years,” he said, “and I’ve been out here for like seven or eight, so I kind of know the drill. Like, one round is not that big a deal. It’s nice to play well, but yeah, they don’t hand out trophies after the first round.” SCOTT: NEW SCHEDULE IS WORKING Adam Scott shot a 1-over 71 in his first round at the FedEx St. Jude Classic since 2007. All in all, it was not a particularly memorable accomplishment for the 13-time PGA TOUR winner, who struggled on the greens and racked up an unhelpful 30 putts. Still, Scott said his new scheduling wrinkle this year has paid dividends. Rather than take the week off prior to the majors, he decided to play, which is why he’s here. “I've set my practice schedules and my playing schedules all around majors a little different this year, and my plan is to play my way into form,” said Scott, 36. “It kind of has given me some good results at the Masters and TPC so far, so hopefully again a good week here, the confidence goes up and go tackle the U.S. Open next week.” Since 1934, just 11 players have won on TOUR and then won a major the following week, among them Rory McIlroy and Phil Mickelson. But not Scott. With his new scheduling wrinkle this year, he finished T9 at the Masters, and T6 at THE PLAYERS Championship. As for his putting at TPC Southwind on Thursday, he planned to spend some time on the practice green. “No wind, pretty soft, good scores are out there,” Scott said. “… It was good scoring out there this morning. I just didn't make any putts, which is disappointing.” THORNBERRY LIVING LARGE Amateur Braden Thornberry, 20, saw plenty of familiar faces in his gallery Thursday. He is from Olive Branch, Miss., which is only about a 45-minute drive southeast of TPC Southwind, and if he didn’t exactly light up the course with a 1-over 71, that was fine. The newly minted NCAA individual champion and Haskins Award winner, he’s done more than enough lately. “It was cool,” he said of his first TOUR start. “It was pretty much what I was expecting. A little less nerves off the first than I was expecting. Hit that one down the fairway and kind of went from there, so actually it went pretty well.” He made two birdies and no bogeys on the first nine holes of his TOUR career, but struggled with three bogeys on his second. The first Ole Miss Rebel to win the NCAA title, Thornberry tied the school record with seven wins in his sophomore season. Still, there’s college golf and then there’s TOUR golf, and on Thursday he found himself sneaking looks at the stars he grew up watching on TV. “Phil was on No. 2,” he said, “and I saw the crowd following him so I wanted to watch him hit a shot or two, so that's still pretty cool. But trying to stay in my own lane.” FEDEX ST. JUDE A MALNATI MAJOR Knoxville resident Peter Malnati admits the FedEx St. Jude may be about as close as he gets to a hometown tournament on the PGA TOUR. And while 32 players in this week’s field have qualified for next week’s U.S. Open at Erin Hills, not so for Malnati. So when Malnati opened his tournament with a double-bogey 6 at the 468-yard 10th hole, where he advanced his second shot, from the right rough, just 26 feet, and later missed a 3 ½-foot bogey putt, he wasn’t about to give up. He made no bogeys and five birdies the rest of the way for a 67, a solid start in his bid to improve his FedExCup number from 186. “I've told everyone that kind of where I am in my career, every PGA TOUR event feels like a major to me,” said Malnati, who won last year’s Sanderson Farms Championship but has yet to find his form this season, his best being a T27 at the Sony Open of Hawaii. “How many majors have you played? Well, they all feel like a major to me,” Malnati continued. “This is my home-state event so it definitely has a little extra kick and it's fun to see people out. There's some familiar faces, just people that I've known growing up and playing amateur events here in the area, so it's really cool.” ODDS AND ENDS Munoz, 24, would have been in the lead alone had he converted a 10-foot birdie putt on 18. At 197th in the FedExCup, the Bogota native’s 64 was surprising, but he specializes in surprises. The former University of North Texas golfer needed a sponsor’s exemption to get into the Web.com Tour’s Club Colombia Championship Presented by Claro last season—and won. He finished 22nd on the regular season Web.com Tour money list to earn his TOUR card. … Stewart Cink is 60th in the FedExCup race and punched his ticket to the U.S. Open at the 36-hole sectional qualifying Monday. Tired? Nah. Cink, 44, made nine birdies at TPC Southwind on Thursday. One of the keys, he said, has been putting coach Craig Welty, with whom he has been working for about a year. “The thing that was missing though was the exceptional rounds weren't there before, and now I'm getting a few rounds every now and then like today where it was really rolling,” Cink said. He made nearly 120 feet of putts. … Phil Mickelson, who has three top-three finishes in his last four starts in Memphis but has never won the FedEx St. Jude Classic, was frustrated with his play after hitting just five of 14 fairways on the way to a 1-under 71. “This is a successful day in the sense that it's a round that I could have easily shot 3, 4, 5 over, but I got it under par,” he said. … Rickie Fowler, who was coming off a T2 at the Memorial Tournament presented by Nationwide, got off to a disastrous start. Beginning his round on the back nine, he made a double-bogey 6 at the 13th hole and a triple-bogey 7 at the 15th on the way to a 4-over 74. He hit just six of 14 fairways and has work to do just to make the cut. ... CALL OF THE DAY SHOT OF THE DAY BEST OF SOCIAL MEDIA


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