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Sunday, May 29, 2022

Palmer scored 62, took the lead from low-scoring Byron Nelson

McKinney, Texas ( Associated Press) — Jordan Spieth thought the course would be more difficult last season than any other tournament on the PGA Tour after delivering more birdies to his hometown Byron Nelson on his debut.

The three-time major winner says he couldn’t be more wrong, and is clearly surprised by how little was done in the first two days to make TPC Craig Ranch a tough test.

Ryan Palmer, one of the Dallas-area players in the shadow of Spieth and Masters champion Scotty Schaffler, shot 10-under 62 on Friday and was tied under 15 with Sebastian Munoz and Tour rookie David Skins, 40.

Muoz, a Colombian who lives in the Dallas area and went to college in North Texas, was even through 13 holes coming out of his second 60 of the season — his first on the PGA Tour — 69. For before birdie on three of the four holes. Skins scored 63 runs.

Justin Lower, another 33-year-old Tour rookie, was alone in fourth, a shot behind the leaders after 66.

“I mean, a 60 yesterday and a lot of 8 (unders) and 7s across the board,” said Spieth, who scored 65 and was three shots off the lead in a group that included defending champion KH Lee.

“It’s just, there are so many teases, it was so amazing,” Spieth said. “I think they were seeing the weekend as very low wind and so they used more easy pins the first two days because I can only name a pin or two on this golf course which is the easiest. There weren’t two places. Hare. I’m a little surprised at how, on a tough golf course, they’ve made it a little easier for us as well.”

Nelson was the only tournament of 2020-21 with over 2,000 birdies (2,007). There were 38 eagles in the first round on Thursday, the most for a single round this season.

Charl Schwartzel had one of the Friday Eagles in his round of 65 that placed him at 13 under. The 2011 Masters winner went into a greenside bunker on the 316-yard, par-4 14th and got out.

Top-ranked Schaffler, who came in with four wins in six individual events capped by a Masters victory, scored 68 and was 9-under after two rounds with his fellow East Texas Longhorns in Spieth and Lee.

Palmer, who finished his opening round with an eagle on par-5 18, started in the last nine and birdied six of the last seven holes on that side, then four more to the front in a bogie-free round. Add.

The 45-year-old has not won an individual event in Hawaii since 2010. Palmer lives in nearby Collyville and is a member of the Colonial Country Club in Fort Worth, where the Tour returns two weeks after the PGA Championship in Southern Hills.

Palmer took a two-shot lead through his last Texas stop in San Antonio in early April before shooting 7 overs over the weekend. He is a four-time winner, including the 2019 Zurich team event in New Orleans with Jon Rahm.

Palmer said, “I spent 19 years doing this, it’s unbelievable that I’ve been here for so long, and these young guys … you got to play such good golf to beat them.” “We’re in position again and we’ll learn from what we learned in San Antonio and try and do it here.”

Lee won a rain-stricken Craig Ranch debut under age 25, while Spieth finished ninth, his personal best in a tournament he desperately wanted to win since Nelson in 2010 as a 16-year-old Sunday contender. Because of his remarkable pro debut in

There’s no sign of rain this time in McKinney, about 30 miles north of downtown Dallas, and the wind was stronger the first two days. A year after a February deep freeze was expected to be rough with more of a factor than expected, and Spieth thought the score would be higher.

Instead, he found himself calling the shifted-up tee box on a par-5 ninth, which played for just 474 yards and averaged nearly three-quarters of a stroke on Friday’s par. It was the easiest hole of the course.

The Tom Weiskoff-designed course also features wide fairways and large greens.

“I have some knowledge of some of the courses I’ve played in South Africa,” said Schwartzel, who finished third under 21 last year. “I don’t feel claustrophobic from the tee. It gives me a little space, and once I can get it into the game, the iron game isn’t a problem. So just really comfortable.”

The Skins, an Englishman without a top-25 finish in 20 PGA Tour appearances spanning nearly a decade, had five consecutive birdie starts from a par-3 seventh in the best period of his career.

Lower finished 15th in an individual event. He paired with Dylan Wu to tie 10th in the team event in New Orleans.

Ninth-ranked Spieth and 17th-ranked Joaquin Nieman, also 12-under, lead the list of 10 of the world’s top 30 in the region.

13 Hideki Matsuyama was under 11, a shot better than eighth-place Justin Thomas, who spent the first two days in the group ahead of his good friend and house guest Spieth for the week.

Number 11 Dustin Johnson was 7 under and number 12 Xander Schöffel rallied for the tournament by 3 overs at the start of the second round, cutting down to number 5 at 5 under with eight birdies in 10 holes.

The remaining top 30 players missed the cut: 10th-ranked Sam Burns, Lee’s runner-up in Nelson last year; Will Zalatoris (28th), another player in his hometown event; and Kevin Kissner (30th).

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More Associated Press Golf: https://apnews.com/hub/golf and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports

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